Vice Minister of Industry and Trade Cao Quoc Hung has held various meetings with Indian government agencies and business associations to promote exports of Vietnamese agro-fishery-forestry products, according to the Ministry of Industry and Trade (MoIT).
|Vice Minister of Industry and Trade Cao Quoc Hung at a grocery store in India. Source: MoIT.|
The activities aim to relieve pressure for Vietnam’s agricultural sector, as exports to China, one of Vietnam’s major buyers of farm products, are poised to plunge due to the impact of the Covid-19 outbreak.
At a meeting with Indian Importers Chambers of Commerce and Industry (IICCI) on February 12, Hung briefed the agency on the advantage and competitiveness of Vietnamese fruits and agricultural products, especially dragon fruit and catfish.
To date, dragon fruit is the only Vietnamese fruit licensed for export to India, while catfish is one of Vietnam’s highly competitive seafood products.
However, with the complicated Covid-19 situation in China, the consumption of such products are declining, said Hung.
In the fields of textile and footwear, Hung said Vietnam is seeking alternative sources for input materials beyond China and hoped India would help Vietnam in this regard.
Chairman of IICCI Atul Kumar Saxena said trade relations between Vietnam and India have been strengthened recently.
Saxena added that India with a large market and high consumption power is an opportunity for Vietnamese agricultural products, especially dragon fruit and catfish, which are fast becoming favorite among Indian customers. He suggested Vietnam continue promoting commercial activities with India.
Hung asked IICCI to advise the Indian government against the use of trade protection measures towards Vietnamese pepper, cashew and incense, among others.
This would be key to ensure bilateral trade turnover will hit the US$15-billion mark in the shortest time possible, Hung asserted.
In a separate meeting on February 12, Chairman of the Trade Promotion Council of India (TPCI) Mohit Singal said Vietnamese dragon fruit has better quality compared to those from other countries. However, the majority of Indian customers do not know about the product.
Singal added Vietnamese lychee is delicious, but has not been granted access to the Indian market and recommended the Vietnamese government work with its Indian counterpart for opening the market for lychee.
According to Singal, every year India holds 40 – 50 trade fairs for agricultural and food products, which present opportunities for Vietnamese enterprises to promote their products.