EU-Vietnam trade deal has seafood exporters alarmed

Elvera Bartels

Seafood exporters are nervous about the EU-Vietnam FTA (no cost trade agreement) that is anticipated to give Vietnam an export edge on marine food items products vis-à-vis India in accessing EU marketplaces.

EU has totally eradicated the import tariff on frozen shrimp and other shrimps, marked at four.2 for every cent beneath the GSP (Generalized Procedure of Preferences). Other frozen products these as skipjack tuna, surumi, and cuttlefish, octopus (ready or preserved) will be totally eradicated from tariffs, official sources explained, including that the import tariff for India for these objects ranges from four.2 for every cent to 18.5 for every cent.

Staging category

In addition, Vietnam will be benefited from tariff leisure beneath the staging category for some products the place India has export potential. This consists of crab (ready or preserved), frozen fish, ready or preserved sardines, cuttlefish and squids. Listed here, the import tariff for India ranges between 2.5 for every cent and 2.8 for every cent.

Given that the agreement would give improved sector obtain to Vietnam in the EU, sources in the sector told BusinessLine that an early execution of India-EU FTA is crucial to assistance the domestic business.

India exported $900 million worthy of seafood to EU in 2018-19 and retains the 3rd posture soon after the US and Japan. The total shrimp export in the course of the time period is to the tune of $four.seven billion.

Alex K Ninan, President, Seafood Exporters Affiliation of India – Kerala area, explained the significant responsibility construction would make Indian seafood products uncompetitive in the EU marketplaces and this would replicate in export earnings.

Scarcity of Vannamei shrimp

In the meantime, seafood exports have started off picking up slowly and gradually, but the uncooked content lack is posing a challenge. In accordance to Ninan, the lack of Vannamei shrimp, the most favored wide variety in the US, has pressured exporters to rely on smaller-dimension shrimps from the classic fishing sector. The trawling ban has also led to a lack of export varieties these as squid, cuttlefish and octopus.

D Ramaraj, President, All India Shrimp Hatcheries Affiliation, explained that there was some initial disruption in Vannamei source in the course of the lockdown, but it has resumed completely by now. The growing need has pressured farmers to inventory in a significant way, which would be harvested in July-August. The present-day harvest accessible is the inventory additional in January-February.

Shaji Newborn John of Kings Group explained the abroad need is primarily for retail packs for house use instead than institutional packs owing to the closing down of eateries and dining establishments in numerous nations around the world amid the Covid threat. Having said that, he expressed the hope that fishing vacations and an anticipated excellent monsoon this year would offer a much better capture soon after the trawling ban on the West Coast.

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