Approximately 220 tariff lines of aquatic products with basic tax rates of 0 - 22% are set to be slashed to 0% immediately after the European Union-Vietnam Free Trade Agreement (EVFTA) comes into effect, according to the Vietnam Association of Seafood Exporters and Producers (VASEP).
A number of seafood products that are subject to high import duties of between 6-22% and beneficial from the tax cut scheme include lobster, cod fish, Atlantic bluefin tuna, pink shrimp, oysters, scallops, squid, octopus, clams, abalone, and processed snails.
The Ministry of Industry and Trade notes the EVFTA is expected to open up a range of bright prospects for the nation’s seafood exports to the EU. Vietnam’s exports to this demanding market are anticipated to increase by 2% annually between 2020 and 2030, while imports from the EU are likely to rise between 2.8% and 5%.
At present, the EU represents one of the country’s three largest seafood import markets, accounting for 15% to 17% of all Vietnamese seafood exports. The country's seafood exports to the bloc remained stable at over US$1.3 billion per year during the 2015 to 2019 period.
The General Department of Vietnam Customs reports Vietnam’s seafood exports last year endured a slight decrease of 2.8% to US$8.54 billion in comparison to 2018’s figures, with the country’s five largest export markets being the United States, Japan, the EU, China, and the Republic of Korea.
Indeed, the first half of the year saw the country's seafood exports decline by 10% to over US$3.5 billion in comparison with the same period last year.