In January 2023, following the trend of the last quarter of 2022 plus the Lunar New Year holiday, Vietnam's tuna exports continued to decline sharply. Tuna export turnover this month reached just over 50 million USD, down 43% compared to the same period in 2022.
The decline occurred in almost all commodity groups, except for processed tuna HS code 16 (mainly frozen steamed tuna loin). Exports of frozen tuna meat/loin with HS code 0304 fell the most by 55%, exports of fresh/frozen/dried tuna decreased by 54% and canned tuna decreased by 46%.
2022 is a remarkable year for Vietnam's tuna industry as the export turnover reached a record of more than USD 1 billion, an increase of 34% compared to 2021. However, this growth is thanks to the strong growth in the domestic market in the first 3 quarters of 2022. In the fourth quarter, under the impact of inflation, Vietnam's tuna export decreased. This trend will continue in the first months of 2023. Unsurprisingly, tuna exports to main markets in January 2023 fell sharply.
The structure of Vietnam's tuna import market this month has changed. Notably, exports to new markets like Korea and Taiwan grew by 457% and 105% over the same period.
The US is still Vietnam's largest tuna importer, but the proportion of this market decreased compared to 2022. The value of tuna exports to this market in January 2023 was just over US$16 million, down 63% over the same period. Although inflation in the US has slowed down, concerns about a continued economic downturn are causing consumers to be more cautious in spending. This is affecting US tuna imports from other countries.
Along with the US, the EU also recorded a sharp decline in the first month of 2023, down 42%, reaching nearly USD 9 million. This decline has caused the share of this market to decrease. The EU has dropped to the third position among the largest importers of Vietnamese tuna. The key tuna export markets in this market block in January were Germany, which increased by 25%, the Netherlands by 52%, and Spain by 52%.
Meanwhile, exports to Israel recovered with an impressive growth rate of nearly 80% over the same period.
In the CPTPP market, Vietnam's tuna exports in January only increased slightly by 6%. Tuna exports to the largest import market in this block, Canada, decreased by 29%, but exports to Japan and Peru increased by 38% and 53%.
Vietnam's tuna export outlook in the first months of the year has not yet prospered as the world economy is forecasted to fall into a recession this year.
Read more: Seafood Industry Report
Seafood Industry Report - December 2022