Vietnam Rubber Association (VRA) has announced that the turnover and value of rubber exports in 2010 reached its highest level ever. With this result, rubber surpassed coffee to occupy the second position among the agricultural products export. However, according to experts, Vietnam’s rubber products have not had trademarks prominent in the international market. To learn more about this issue, reporter Ha Linh discussed with Ms Tran Thi Thuy Hoa – General Secretary of the Vietnam Rubber Association.
According to VRA, with exports in 2010, rubber exports ranked second in agricultural commodities, which factors you think to bring this positive result?
In 2010, rubber exports reached the highest ever with the output of 782,200 tonnes, turnover of over US$2.3 billion. As a result, rubber outstripped coffee in exports, rose to second place in the agricultural products of Vietnam. Over the world, Vietnam accounts for 7.3 percent of the total output, ranking fifth after Thailand, Indonesia, Malaysia, and India, while the average yield ranked the second Vietnam (1.720kg/ha) after India (1.784kg/ha).
Getting this result is due to the sharp increase in rubber prices as the world’s economy recovered that pulled the demand for natural rubber production because of the increasing production of the rubber tire to serve in the transportation sector while supply increased but is still lower than demand. Rubber prices have risen about 82 percent compared with 2009 and up 25 percent compared with 2008. Besides the price factor, the volume of rubber exports in 2010 rose nearly 7 percent from 2009 when the domestic rubber production was improved by increasing the area of exploitation and productivity. In 2010, China’s huge market is to reduce Vietnam’s rubber imports but the business has sought to expand into other markets for export to help continue the growth.
What is your opinion about the export markets of Vietnam’s rubber and the forecast of the industry in 2011?
In the export market of Vietnam rubber industry, having exported to many countries around the world but in the industry’s export market, China remains the largest export market with the market share of about 60-65 percent. The other important markets are only about 3-7 percent for each market, including Malaysia, Taiwan, Korea, and Germany.
In the first quarter of 2011, rubber exports reached US$722 million, twice as much as the same period in 2010, increased 122 percent, thanks to price increases (66 percent) and increased in volume (33 percent). With this result, predicted in 2011, exports have potential to reach about three billion dollars.
To create favorable conditions for the development of rubber industry, the Prime Minister issued Decision No750 /QĐ-TTg planning to develop the rubber industry in 2015 and Vision to 2020. Accordingly, the goal in 2015, the country will have 800.000ha rubber and latex production reached 1.2 million tonnes.
In your opinions, what policies should Vietnam adopt to further enhance the position of rubber industry in the international arena?
In the coming time, the Ministry of Industry and Trade will host the national brand with a new point of not only to continue to support brand-building business, but also support the national associations to build national brand for the industry strengths, including the rubber industry. With the determination of the Director Board of the Association and the positive response of many members, with the support of other ministries, the Vietnam Rubber Association will soon launch the plan to build Vietnamese rubber industry brand in the national brand program 2011-2015.
Vietnam Rubber Association has cooperated with the Processing Trade of agricultural, forestry and fisheries and Salt Department of the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development to assess the status of quality natural rubber in Vietnam, survey rubber resource quality, supervise processing to propose some solutions to improve the quality of Vietnam’s rubber. Association management agencies would soon implement measures to closely manage the quality of rubber raw materials for shipment of all export or domestic consumption that must be accompanied by a certificate of quality control as the recognized products, and strict punishment of fraud cases on commercial quality that affects the whole industry’s reputation. Thus new customers around the world trust to use the product of the rubber industry in Vietnam.