US places heavy tariff on Vietnamese pangasius

18:43 | 20/03/2018
The Ministry of Industry and Trade (MoIT) said the tariffs on Vietnamese pangasius are equivalent to the export price and raise too high protective barriers for them to reach the US.
us places heavy tariff on vietnamese pangasius
The US Department of Commerce issued hefty tariff on pangasius exports

The US Department of Commerce (DOC) has just announced the final results of the 13th administrative review (POR 13) of the anti-dumping order of Vietnamese pangasius.

The results state to apply a tariff of between $2.39-7.74 per kilogramme on products from the two companies that were the subject of the investigation, while other exporters face a fee of $3.87 per kilogramme, the highest tax the US has ever imposed on Vietnamese pangasius.

According to exporters, the rate of $3.87 per kilogramme is almost equivalent to the export price of Vietnamese pangasius in the US.

Vietnamese businesses will not be able to afford the tariff and may have to suspend exports to the US.

Truong Dinh Hoe, chairman of the Vietnam Association of Seafood Exporters and Producers (VASEP), said that Vietnamese businesses will not be able to afford the tariff and may have to suspend exports to the US.

During the review, MoIT has been doing their utmost, collaborating and providing updates for the DOC, but the department still used the application of facts available (AFA) to define the final tariffs, as well as applied these high tariffs to most Vietnamese exporters.

MoIT said that these tariffs are not objective and too protective. The ministry suggested the US to review and adjust the tariffs on Vietnamese exporters in line with the WTO’s regulations and ensuring equality for both sides.

MoIT will continue collaborating with relevant ministries and agencies, VASEP, and exporters to find solutions to this problem.

Earlier, Vietnam lodged a complaint with the WTO to challenge US restrictions on imports of pangasius products from Vietnam. The complaint said that pangasius exports are economically significant for Vietnam and a healthy and affordable source of protein for US consumers, but that the US was unfairly restricting imports without a sufficient scientific basis. Under WTO rules, Vietnam could ask for adjudication if the US does not settle the dispute within 60 days.

The US has been the biggest importer of Vietnamese pangasius in recent years, but strict regulations on quality and food safety, especially a catfish inspection programme that was launched in August last year to check the fish from the farm through to processing and shipment, have repeatedly created bumps on the road to the US for Vietnamese exporters.

Vietnam earned $1.78 billion from exporting pangasius fish last year, up 4.3 per cent against 2016, but export revenue from the US dropped 11 per cent to $387 million, said VASEP.

By Minh Vu

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