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NEWS UPDATES Asean Affairs                    27  September 2011

Vietnam’s agricultural exports up

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Exports of agricultural, forestry and seafood products in the first nine months of the year is estimated to reach US$21.2 billion, up 54.1 percent over the same period last year, according to the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development.

During the period, key agricultural products such as rice, coffee and rubber accounted for $10.7 billion, up 49.3 percent; seafood hit $4.4 billion, up 26.7 percent; and forestry products reached $3 billion, up 17 percent.

In September alone, the country exported $2.4 billion worth of produce, up $200 million against the previous month.

Director of the ministry's Information and Statistics Centre, Nguyen Viet Chien said a global price hike had helped to significantly lift turnover as the volume of many key export items had risen only slightly during the period.

Thanks to a price hike of more than 54 percent, coffee exports earned $2.2 billion in the first nine months, up by 66.5 per cent over the same period last year, though shipments were up by only 8.9 percent to 994,000 tons.

Rubber export turnover during the period also surged more than 61 percent to $2.3 billion, despite an export volume rise of only 3.3 percent to 530,000 tonnes. Average rubber export prices during the period reached $1,520 per tonne.

Despite an export volume decrease of 7.8 percent to 129,000 tonnes, cashew valued at $1.1 billion, up 38.6 percent.

With a shipment of 6.2 million tonnes, up 17.44 percent, rice was the largest export earner of agricultural products with $3.1 billion, up 25.6 percent in value. Most Vietnamese rice was exported to the Philippines, Indonesia, Malaysia, Cuba, Senegal, Bangladesh and Ivory Coast, of which Indonesia for the first time surpassed the Philippines to become Vietnam's largest rice importer in the first nine months.

With an export turnover of $2.9 billion in the first nine months, up 17 percent over the same period last year, woodwork products were the main contributor to the high rise in the country's forestry product export during the first nine months, the ministry said.

As demand for Vietnam's agricultural, forestry and seafood products is showing positive signs, the ministry forecast that the industry would exceed the export target of $23 billion this year, up by $3.8 billion over last year.



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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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