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"Vietnam spends heavily on fertilizer, pesticide imports"

Fertilizer and pesticide imports, especially from China, have amounted to nearly US$1.7 billion in the year to September, the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development of Vietnam said in a report.

The ministry’s data shows that Vietnam purchased 3.57 million tons of fertilizers valued at US$955 million in the nine-month period, up 19.7% in volume and 16.7% in value against the year-ago period. And data updated to end-August indicates shipments from China in January-August made up 39.3% of the nation’s total fertilizer imports, growing 9.8% in volume and 15.5% in value versus the same period last year.

The steep fertilizer import rise in the first eight months was also seen at key suppliers such as Russia with 75.5%, Japan with 48.2%, South Korea with 26.7%, Belarus with 19.7% and Laos with 15.9%.

As for pesticides and pesticide materials, import shipments increased a staggering 47.9% year-on-year to US$739 million in January-September and Chinese products accounted for 55% of the total.

As a result, the import spending of the agriculture sector in the January-September period surged 19.1% year-on-year to US$21.15 billion.

However, agriculture remains a sector with a high trade surplus, at nearly US$6 billion. Specifically, agro-forestry-fishery exports reached nearly US$27 billion in the first nine months, up 14.1% over the year-ago period.

Of which, some commodities registered strong export growth, such as rice with 20% to US$2.02 billion, rubber with 52.7% to US$1.66 billion, cashew nuts with 25% to US$2.55 billion, and wood and wooden products with 10% to US$5.51 billion.

Source: Saigon Times / Agroberichten Buitenland
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