Russian-Ukrainian conflict harms Vietnamese seafood exporters

Fishermen transport tuna in the central province of Khanh Hoa on January 15, 2022. Photo VnExpress/Xuan Ngoc

Vietnamese seafood exporters to Russia and Ukraine are struggling, with some reporting double-digit percentage declines as the military confrontation between the two countries continues.

Five Vietnamese catfish exporters to Russia reported a year-on-year drop in export value of 29.8% to $2.18 million in January, according to data from the Vietnamese Association of Exporters and Producers of Catfish. seafood (VASEP).

This contrasts with a 72.5% increase in the value of exports to Russia last year. Vietnam was Russia’s third largest importer of catfish last year, behind Argentina and China.

“Since the beginning of the year, and especially after Russia launched a special military operation in Ukraine, the export of catfish to this market has faced disruptions and challenges,” VASEP said. in a report.

Catfish exporters say the ruble’s 30% drop has made buyers reluctant to pay for their orders. Payment processes have also become difficult due to Western nations’ sanctions against Russia.

Shipping has also become a challenge, with transport companies not accepting orders to Russia, given the high chances of goods being seized en route.

Vietnamese catfish exporters have stopped signing new orders with Russia, although importers still want to buy.

Meanwhile, Vietnamese shrimp exporters reported a 23% year-on-year drop in the value of Russian exports to $3.3 million from January 1 to February 15.

The exporters say there is no certainty that their shipment will clear customs to enter Russia and that all transactions are facing difficulties.

Russia and Ukraine are among the top 20 export markets for Vietnamese tuna, but exporters say several shipments have been turned away amid the military conflict and they are now trying to find new markets.

The Russian military operation in Ukraine has entered its 13th day with no quick end in sight despite the multitude of sanctions Western countries have imposed on Moscow.