The UK is among the top 10 Vietnam’s seafood import markets, accounting for 3% of seafood export value. In the first 8 months of 2022, Vietnam seafood exports to the UK increased by 3.5% to 213 million USD, of which pangasius exports accounted for 47 million USD.
Inflation in the UK is at a 40-year high and is almost the highest in European countries, consumption of high-priced food items is limited. Therefore, exports of shrimp, tuna and some marine fishes to the UK decreased sharply. Meanwhile, pangasius exports still maintained a growth rate of 16% because pangasius prices were affordable. Moreover the UK was short of white fish due to the ban on seafood from Russia, so pangasius became an alternative in the market, especially for the popular fish & chip industry.
In the UK, rising energy and raw materials costs are causing pressure and heavy damage to the fish & chip industry. According to a recent survey of 410 members of the National Federation of Fried Fish Producers (NFFF), gas and electricity prices have increased by 300%-500%. Europe’s energy crisis worsened after Russia closed the Nordstream 1 gas pipeline. On September 5, gas prices in the UK increased by 35%. This situation puts fish & chip shops on the edge of corruption because the capital is under great pressure while prices of cod and haddock and other input costs such as potatoes, sunflower oil have all increased dramatically.
Regarding tariff advantages, the FTA with the UK (UKVFTA) has a mechanism to follow the EVFTA agreement with the EU, which means that pangasius has a roadmap to reduce tax to 0% after 3 years. Thus, by 2022, this product will almost be imported into the UK with a tax rate of 0%.
Seafood exports to the UK in the last months of the year are showing more positive signs than at the beginning of the year, especially for pangasius. In August, pangasius exports to the UK more than tripled over the same period last year, reaching over 7 million USD.
Accumulated in the first 8 months of the year, pangasius exports to the UK reached nearly 47 million USD, up 28% over the same period last year. In which, frozen pangasius fillets/cuts account for 79%, processed pangasius accounts for 17%, and whole pangasius accounts for 4%.
With such good growth momentum, Vietnam pangasius exports to the UK is forecasted to reach about $67 million in 2022, up 30% compared to 2021.
Compiled by Thuy Linh