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NEWS UPDATES Asean Affairs     September  16,  2016  

VN expects $2.5b gain in fruit, veggie exports

The export value of domestic fruits and vegetables is expected to reach US$2.5 billion this year, surpassing the value of rice exports for the first time, the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MARD) announced.

The Ministry said the vegetable and fruit industry grew from exporting $235 million to 36 markets in 2005 to exporting $1.8 billion to 60 markets in 2015.

The export value in 2015 reached a record high $1.8 billion, 123 per cent higher than in 2014.

Việt Nam’s exporters have promoted vegetable and fruit exports to both traditional and new markets, including markets with strict rules, such as the US, European Union (EU), Japan, South Korea, Canada, Australia and New Zealand.

Fruit producers in the Cửu Long (Mekong) Delta region are now producing fruit products using good agricultural practices (GAP) to meet export market requirements, the Ministry said.

Many production models have been implemented and certified for rambutan and green-skin pomelo in Bến Tre Province, Năm Roi pomelo in Vĩnh Long Province, Vĩnh Kim star-apple, Hòa Lộc mango and pineapple in Tiền Giang Province and mango in Đồng Tháp Province, VietGAP and GlobalGAP said.

Viet Nam has emphasized rice exports for many years. But fruit exports are in demand on the world market, so the nation should promote fruit exports in the future, the deputy minister of agriculture and rural development Le Quoc Doanh said.

The Cửu Long Delta region has had a total annual output of 3.18 million tonnes of fruits for local consumption and export, the Ministry reported. Key fruit products include dragon fruit, mango, rambutan, durian, star apple, pomelo, longan, orange and tangerine mainly from Tien Giang, Vĩnh Long, Sóc Trăng, Ben Tre, Dong Thap and Hau Giang provinces.

Since 2000, farmers in the region have applied modern science and technology to produce fruit products, increase output, improve quality and establish regions specialising in fruit production.

But Viet Nam’s fruit products still face many technical barriers in export markets, an official of MARD’s Plant Protection Department said.

Hoàng Trung, head of the department, said countries have different climates resulting in different plant structures. So a generalized plant quarantine protocol is not possible.

There are also technical barriers to import safe vegetable and fruit products and to protect local production, Trung said. Reducing tariffs during international integration increased technical barriers for quarantine and food safety.

It also takes an average of 3-4 years, or up to 10 years, for each kind of fruit to be approved for an import licence to just one country, Trung said.

The quality and safety of fresh fruit remain challenges for vegetable and fruit exporting, especially in strict markets such as the US, Japan, Australia and New Zealand. Production of vegetable and fruit products for export must meet VietGAP and Global GAP standards.

Quality control is vital to increase fruit and vegetable exports, Trung said. Vegetable and fruit producers should also follow import regulations closely to create favourable conditions for local vegetable and fruit products to enter export markets.

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This year in Thailand-what next?

AseanAffairs   04 January 2011
By David Swartzentruber      

It is commonplace in journalism to write two types of articles at the transition point between the year that has passed and the New Year. As this writer qualifies as an “old hand” in observing Thailand with a track record dating back 14 years, it is time take a shot at what may unfold in Thailand in 2011.

The first issue that can’t be answered is the health of Thailand’s beloved King Bhumibol, who is now 83 years old. He is the world's longest reigning monarch, but elaborate birthday celebrations in December failed to mask concern over his health. More






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