The first shrimp export exceeded USD2 billion

January 13, 2011 14:40

For the first time Vietnamese shrimp export has exceeded US$2 billion. According to Vietnam Customs, shrimp export of the country from January to November 2010 has reached nearly 219,000 MT, worth about US$1.9 billion and in 2010 is estimated at 240,000 MT, worth about US$2.08 billion (in 2009: 209,567 MT and US$1.675 billion), reports with reference to VASEP.

In 2010, Vietnamese shrimp was exported to 92 markets, up more than 10 markets from 2009. The year of 2010 also marked by the participation of 341 shrimp exporters, including 149 whiteleg shrimp ones and 163 black tiger shrimp ones.

There are 4 main factors contributing to the results of shrimp export this year.

1.      The participation of whiteleg shrimp

Whiteleg shrimp has been allowed to farm since 2008. Its area and production continuously increased in last three years. In 2010, the farming area was nearly 25,000 ha, up 30 percent compared to 2009; the production was 135,000 MT, up 50 percent from 89,500 MT in 2009. Most whiteleg shrimp was farmed in Quang Ninh with nearly 4,000 ha and in the central and southern provinces with nearly 7,000 ha (accounting for 28 percent). The main farming manners is intensive with the production of 8.7 - 13 MT per ha per season (the highest in the central). Currently, Vietnam has 316 whiteleg shrimp hatcheries.

 From January to November 2010, Vietnam has exported 56,271 MT of whiteleg shrimp, worth approximately US$370 million, accounting for 25.7 percent in volume and 19.4 percent in value of the total shrimp export and ranking the second in value behind black tiger shrimp. Whiteleg shrimp export in 2010 is expected at about 61,000 MT, worth nearly US$410 million.

Vietnamese whiteleg shrimp is popular in Japan and South Korea. In Vietnam, many enterprises have turned towards whiteleg shrimp processing to solve the "raw material problems" and expand the consumption markets that led the price of raw whiteleg shrimp to increase significantly in 2010.

 2. The key role of black tiger shrimp, especially the large-size ones

Black tiger shrimp is still the main objective to the success of Vietnamese shrimp industry. In 2010, the area of black tiger shrimp farming was 613,718 ha, up light over the previous year, concentrated in 6 Mekong Delta provinces including Ben Tre, Tra Vinh, Soc Trang, Bac Lieu, Ca Mau and Kien Giang with 92 percent (564,485 ha). In which, the area of industrial farming accounted for 10 percent (nearly 63,000 ha). The total production of farmed black tiger shrimp was nearly 333,000 MT, only up 4 percent over 2009.

In 2010, the continuous lack of raw material shrimp led its price to increase, reaching the highest level in last 10 years. This situation made some plants only operate 50 - 60 percent of their capacity while others must import raw material from regional countries like Thailand and Indonesia.

From January to November 2010, Vietnam has exported 128,926 MT of black tiger shrimp, worth US$1.304 billion, up 42.4 percent in volume and 58.8 percent in value compared to the same period of 2009, accounting for 58 percent in volume and 68 percent in value of total shrimp export. Black tiger shrimp export value in 2010 is estimated at 141,000 MT, valued at US$1.45 billion.

3.      The efforts of shrimp exporters in diversifying the markets and products

In 2010, many markets have not recovered fully; some markets have changed the structure of their products and suppliers. However, with many market oppotunities, the decline of some shrimp suppliers and the efforts of Vietnamese shrimp enterprises, the country has exported shrimp to 92 markets, up more than 10 markets compared to 2009.

Shrimp enterprises are focusing on diversifying products towards increasing the product value to contribute to the stronger shrimp export value growth than its volume. From January to November 2010, export shrimp volume has increased by 13 percent, and its value increased 23.5 percent over the same period of 2009. The average price of shrimp export in 2010 reached about 8.7 USD per kg, up 8.8 percent over 2009. Increasing shrimp export to most markets showed Vietnamese shrimp was highly evaluated in the international market.

The U.S. had the highest average import price at 10.6 USD per kg, up 16 percent compared to 2009, followed by Japan and EU. The new markets were also recovered significantly in export price such as Australia, Canada and Singapore (averagely 8.3 - 10.1 USD per kg).

4.      The gap of the supply - demand in the international market

Oil spills in the Gulf of Mexico, the economic recovery of major markets, the status of disease in shrimp as well as the food hygiene and safety problems in some Asian processing countries were basic factors and big opportunities for Vietnamese seafood export in general and shrimp in particular in 2010 while the demand was improved and greater than the supply in the world.

Shrimp export to most major markets registered the high growth both in volume and value, in which China and South Korea, especially China had the highest growth rate of 54 percent in value during 11 months of 2010. Only two markets was reduced in export value were Canada and the Philippines.

Until now, Japan remained the largest importer of Vietnamese shrimp, followed by the U.S. and EU. From January to November 2010, Vietnam has exported 57,236 MT of shrimp to Japan, worth US$528.127 million, up 8.2 percent in volume and nearly 15 percent in value compared to the same period of 2009.

Vietnam currently ranks the fourth in the value of shrimp export to the U.S., accounting for 9.8 percent of the total value although only accounting for 8 percent of the total volume. Vietnamese shrimp price reached the highest compared with the common price that showed the higher value of large black tiger shrimp than vannamei of other countries. Through November 2010, Vietnam has exported nearly 48,000 MT of shrimp to the U.S., worth US$511.7 million, up 20.3 percent in volume and 40.3 percent in value over the same period last year.

Vietnam ranks the eighth among shrimp export countries to EU, accounting for more than 5 percent of the total market share. The advantages of price for large and medium - size black tiger shrimp compared to small vannamei and other large shrimps boosted its export volume to this block to increase sharply during the period 2003 - 2009 with the average of 16.8 percent per year. Through November 2010, Vietnam has exported 41,800 MT of shrimp to EU, worth US$307 million, up 8.7 percent in volume and 17.7 percent in value over the same period last year.


In 2011, the domestic shrimp production will increase as the results of its export in 2010, especially whiteleg shrimp. The trend of links between farmers and processing plants also increases due to the top issues of quality, demand and benefits of each party.

In 2011, shrimp export will remain a level of over US$2 billion as in 2010 and reach about US$2.1 billion (up slight compared to 2010).

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