Information from the Ministry of Industry and Trade, in August 2023, export turnover to the US reached 9.01 billion USD. This is the highest level in a year since August 2022. Compared to the same period, exports to the US still grew, but only decreased by 9.4% (improved compared to a decrease of 13.7% in July and a decrease of 25.5% in June). Compared to July 2023, exports to the US increased by 4.3%.

Among the group of 6 key products exported to the US, the clearest recovery is the textile and garment group as the export value of this product group has followed a continuous increasing trend from the beginning of the year until now.

The resilience of exports is also shown when looking at export developments to the US, Vietnam’s largest market. In August 2023, exports to the US decreased by only more than 9% over the same period, the smallest decrease in the past 6 months. It is expected that this decrease will gradually narrow in the last months of the year because normally the fourth quarter of every year is also the quarter when exports rebound strongly.

Notably, in the first 8 months of 2023, exports to the US reached 62.11 billion USD, down nearly 20% compared to the same period in 2022, but the value is still higher than previous years.

Commenting on this issue, VinaCapital’s Chief Economist Michael Kokalari said that there are some signs that exports will recover in the fourth quarter thanks to the bottom of US retailers’ inventories.

Currently, more than half of Vietnam’s export value to the US is high-tech products (consumer electronics, smartphones), garments and footwear, the rest is other products. such as furniture and agricultural products.

“We expect a recovery in the second half of this year, thanks to the launch of new phone models, because many components used for new phones are produced in Vietnam. For apparel and footwear, exports are not expected to recover until 2024, as US retailers’ inventory reduction rate for these items is slower than for electronics products. consumption” – predicted VinaCapital’s Chief Economist.

Enhance commodity competitiveness

Dr. Nguyen Tri Hieu acknowledged that the US is an open market for imported goods, but because of this characteristic, the US has also become the most difficult and competitive market. Vietnam not only has to compete with countries with the same product types but also has to compete honestly with domestic manufacturers.

Accordingly, the US is an export market with many complex and strict regulations and procedures. Vietnamese businesses face trade barriers, technical barriers, and food safety and hygiene standards.

The US is also a country that regularly applies trade defense measures that not only affect one business but also the entire industry and partners can find options from other countries. Typically, Vietnam’s agricultural exports are exported to the US.

The Ministry of Industry and Trade’s assessment report clearly shows that production costs of Vietnam’s agricultural sector are increasing due to pressure from gasoline, oil prices and the supply chain. Especially investing in green production processes and reducing emissions as requested by US buyers also puts Vietnamese businesses in a position of having to transform to keep up. Not to mention, with long geographical distances and high transportation costs, agricultural products are

Vietnamese exports to the US are struggling to find ways to minimize production costs to compete.

Faced with price pressure, the Ministry of Industry and Trade recommends that Vietnamese businesses need to increase investment in preservation technology so that fresh fruit can travel by sea to the US, taking advantage of Free Trade Agreements (FTA) to have best tariff incentives, helping goods to be more competitive.

In addition to fresh fruit, Vietnamese businesses can promote processed products using modern technology. In the long term, Vietnamese manufacturers must deploy solutions to develop the “smart agriculture” model, with the application of technology to agriculture, improving productivity, quality, and minimizing the impact of environmental pollution. Climate Change.

Many experts say that with the export turnover of agriculture, forestry and fishery products to the US reaching nearly 14 billion USD in 2022, it shows that the US is a potential market for Vietnamese agricultural products to accelerate exports in the coming years. Along with that, negotiation activities to open the market for some high-quality Vietnamese fruits are still continuing.

 

However, in the face of increasing US protectionist policies, Vietnamese exporters need to pay attention to anti-dumping investigations and keep records of exported goods. The US market is increasingly concerned about consumer safety issues, sustainable development, and combating climate change. This is the premise for setting up new standards and new regulations related to supply chains and clean materials.

The space is big but it’s not easy

Assessing the US market, Vietnamese Commercial Counselor in the US Do Ngoc Hung said that with a population of more than 333 million people and large purchasing power, and in a period of strong recovery after the pandemic, the US is Potential market for Vietnamese goods. Consumption needs and habits vary according to income, cultural characteristics and regions, creating great room for Vietnamese businesses to exploit the US market.

In addition, the large Vietnamese population in the US is a bridge and an important customer group for Vietnamese goods. Regarding the food market in the Western United States, Head of the Vietnam Trade Office in San Francisco Tran Minh Thang said that this area has many large supermarkets and the number of Vietnamese Americans here is relatively large with 2 18 million people with great consumption of goods. This is a potential market for Vietnamese goods.

However, according to experts, the US is also a demanding market with high requirements on food safety and hygiene, technical barriers on labor and the environment…

Besides, Vietnamese goods also have to compete fiercely with goods produced in the US as well as produced in Asian, South American, and even African countries. To dominate the US market, Mr. Do Ngoc Hung recommended that businesses need to grasp the diversity and openness in American culture.

At the same time, it is necessary to further improve the quality and technical content of products, focusing on legality, safety, and environmental friendliness; Regularly evaluate risks of unfair competition to limit risks of trade defense.

General Director and CEO of Dragonberry Produce Company (an enterprise operating in the field of fruit import and export in the US) Amy Nguyen shared that if you want to export goods, especially agricultural products to the US, you must clearly understand the relevant regulations. to animal and plant quarantine, ensuring products do not exceed pesticide residue thresholds. Product preservation technology also needs to be upgraded so that goods can be transported long distances and still be fresh when they reach consumers’ shelves.

Since 2020, the US has become the largest trading partner in agriculture, forestry, and fisheries trade with Vietnam, with main products being cashew nuts, seafood, wood, and fruit. Even during the period of Covid-19, economic recession, and supply chain disruption, both exports and imports of agriculture, forestry, and fisheries between Vietnam and the US increased at double digits.

 

According to Deputy Minister of Industry and Trade Do Thang Hai, to realize the potential for trade and investment development between Vietnam and the US, the two sides need to strengthen connectivity and ensure continuity in the operations of supply chains. , avoiding negative impacts on manufacturing industries.

At the same time, it is necessary to promote the policy dialogue mechanism of the Vietnam – US Trade and Investment Council to create a favorable legal framework, promote trade and investment exchanges and promptly resolve difficulties. difficulties arise in the fields of economics and trade.