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Shrimp exports top record $2b   2011-01-03 - VNS

Shrimp is processed for export by the Ca Mau Seafood Import-Export Co. Shrimp exports earned more than US$2 billion last year. — VNA/VNS Photo Le Huy Hai

Shrimp is processed for export by the Ca Mau Seafood Import-Export Co. Shrimp exports earned more than US$2 billion last year. — VNA/VNS Photo Le Huy Hai

 Shrimp exports were worth more than US$2 billion last year, 20 per cent up and the highest ever achieved by the country, the Viet Nam Association of Seafood Exporters and Producers (VASEP) said in its recent annual report.

Around 240,000 tonnes were exported, a 15 per cent increase in volume.

Truong Dinh Hoe, VASEP general secretary, said the sharp growth last year was mainly due to a 30 per cent spurt in export of white-leg shrimp.

Export of the creature was estimated at $500 million. Last year, white-leg shrimp was farmed on 25,000 ha, 30 per cent more than in 2009.

VASEP said shrimp prices had risen due to several reasons like the oil spill in the Mexican Gulf off the US, the economic recovery in some main markets, and a fall in output.

Viet Nam exported shrimp to 92 markets, most of which increased their purchases. Japan was the biggest, buying 27.8 per cent, followed by the US (26.9 per cent) and the EU (16.2 per cent). Mainland China and South Korea were also promising markets, VASEP said.

In 201,1 shrimp exports are again expected to top $2 billion. The association eyes revenues of $3 billion by 2015.

Deputy Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Luong Le Phuong said seafood processors would work closely with farmers to produce quality shrimp and eliminate traces of the antibiotic trifluralin in their export produce.

VASEP chairman Tran Thien Hai said: "We should re-examine our shrimp production process and ensure exporters clearly know their products' origins and apprise farmers about chemicals they can use and consumers' requirements."

"A farmer used to tell me that he would love to raise quality shrimp but he did not know what chemicals should not be used. He should be updated with market requirements," Hai said.

VASEP members recently signed an agreement with the My Thanh Shrimp Association based in Mekong Delta Soc Trang Province to buy clean shrimp for export.

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