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Establishing floor price for pangasius exported to the U.S.

According to statistics from Vietnam Customs, to 15th June 2012, fish shipment to the U.S. totaled US$162,9 million, a rise of 37 percent compared to the same period of last year. The U.S. proportion in Vietnam pangasius export structure also increased to 21 percent in the first half of 2012 from 15 percent in the same period of 2011. This market is predicted to pass the EU to be Vietnam’s largest importer of pangasius if export to the EU kept downing in the next future.

Vietnam pangasius sales to the U.S. saw growth in both volume and value, the fish price is sliding down. Regarding to figures on Fis.com, frozen pangasius fillets sent to the U.S. in April 2012 cost US$3,480 per MT, FOB, down 4 percent from US$3,641 per MT in the previous month. On Urnerbarry, in July 2012 pangasius of all sizes from Vietnam saw drop from that in early 2012 and the same period last year because this market still has had huge fish inventory.

At the moment, raw pangasius price fell below VND20,000 per kilogram in domestic market. The sooner the industry sets the floor price for exported fish, the sooner the price can be improved and fish farmers may get higher profit. It is very important to set a floor price for fish traded to the U.S because this is an important market to pangasius industry. Moreover, the new floor price is necessary to help pangasius get its real value, ensuring profits for farmers, processors and exporters.

At two meetings, 30 leading pangasius companies agreed to set out the floor price for the U.S. market in the middle of each month; as well as to inform VASEP about their contracts in order to prevent some companies to sell fish below the price.

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