NEWS for TODAY---------
Vegetable, fruit to earn $1 billion by 2015
23:11' 12/04/2008 (GMT+7)
VietNamNet Bridge - Deputy Minister of Trade and Industry Tran Duc Minh has said Viet Nam expects to earn 1 billion USD from vegetable, flower and fruit exports by 2015.
At present, the country earns around 300 million USD annually from these exports.
According to the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MARD), Vietnam earned 76 million USD from vegetable and fruit exports in the first quarter of this year, a 28 percent increase compared with the same period last year.
Vietnam’s consumption of these products has remained stable, and Japan, mainland China, Taiwan, Russia and the US are the five largest markets for export. Among them, mainland China is a crucial market, buying 60 percent of all exported vegetables and fruit from Viet Nam.
Emerging export markets include Thailand, Hong Kong and Singapore as well as European Union countries.
However, the fruit and vegetable sector still faces certain limitations. Produce volume tends to be inconsistent. Farmers’ production scales are small to begin with. Each household has between 200 and 300 sq.m of vegetables and 1,000 sq.m of fruit. The small scale makes it difficult to apply advanced technology which could help stabilise supply and improve produce quality.
Storage facilities are also in poor condition, which makes transport and shipping delays even more difficult for farmers already struggling with crop production.
MARD has begun to co-operate with many domestic and foreign organizations to find effective development methods for these sectors. A successful model exists between Metro Cash and Carry Vietnam Co and the agricultural sector in Ho Chi Minh City and southern provinces. Officials help train farmers to raise their production volume, improve business expertise and build warehouses to international standards. The company also provides assistance with domestic consumption and exports.
Nguyen Thi Ninh, an official from the HCM City Department of Agriculture and Rural Development, said the department had a project for 2008-10 to help enterprises export vegetables, flowers and fruit from HCM City and nearby provinces to the European market. The project will also train farmers on how to promote exports, gauge the market and build business strategies.
MARD will focus on developing 10 kinds of fruit trees for export: orange, tangerine, grapefruit, pineapple, mango, longan and blue dragon, among others. In addition, scientists are replacing low quality strains with high quality ones, such as the Hoa Loc and Chin Hoa mango.
To encourage farmers to develop orchards in planned regions, the Ministry of Trade and Industry has asked the State to prioritise tax policies on fruit production and businesses. This would involve exempting value-added taxes for co-operatives and enterprises that trade fruit and exempting agricultural taxes for farmers with orchards.