Sugar imports will help cut prices


HA NOI — The Department of Processing and Trade for Agro-Forestry-Fisheries Products and Salt Production under the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development has asked the Ministry of Industry and Trade to resume sugar imports in order to avoid rising prices in October and November this year.

"Up to the middle of July, domestic manufacturers produced 1.15 million tonnes of sugar, a year-on-year increase of 260,000 tonnes," said deputy head of the department Tran Thi Mieng.

"This volume, however, is insufficient to meet the domestic demand. This year, the country needs around 1.3-1.4 million tonnes of sugar," Mieng said.

Mieng affirmed that the price would remain stable from now until October, unless there was movement on the world market.

However, she added, prices in many markets such as Thailand were on the rise, and in addition, the stockpiled volume was small, which could still lead to a price hike.

Meanwhile, Viet Nam had imported just 93,000 tonnes of sugar out of the 250,000 tonnes that were allowed this year, so it was necessary to resume imports, she said.

Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Cao Duc Phat said he supported the proposal because "after balancing supply and demand, the ministry found that Viet Nam was still lacking sugar, so the industry needs to resume imports before the new crop starts in September". Phat also said that the sugar price was stable but may increase slightly in the coming days, so the department needed to follow market movement and co-operate with the Ministry of Industry and Trade in order to supply correct information to sugar manufacturers and consumers.

Previously, due to falling prices and oversupply, the Viet Nam Sugar and Sugarcane Association called on the Ministry of Industry and Trade to extend the final date for import quotas past December 7, thanks to which the market was sufficiently warmed up.

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