Sunday, July 25, 2021

business

Thai vegetable exports rise in Q1 as Chinese demand doubles


Thailand’s free trade agreements helped vegetable exports grow to US$506 million in the first quarter of this year, driven by a doubling in demand from China, the Commerce Ministry reported on Monday.

Vegetable exports to China grew 96 per cent to US$471 million in January-March from the same period last year.

China is now Thailand's No 1 foreign vegetable market, accounting for 81 per cent of exports, followed by Asean and Japan.

Thailand’s Q1 vegetable exports to other FTA partners also grew, including to Asean by $30 million or 60 per cent, Hong Kong ($3 million/+1%), South Korea ($2 million/+23%) and India ($0.7 million/+12%).

The increase was driven by an 86 per cent rise in cassava shipments worth US$387 million, mainly to China and Japan. Meanwhile, chilli exports valued at $31 million rose 708 per cent, with China and Malaysia as main markets, while baby corn exports were worth $9 million (+13%), with Japan and Singapore driving demand.

Meanwhile, under the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) signed in November 2020, Thailand is urging FTA partners to cut more import restrictions. In response, South Korea will reduce import tariffs on frozen cassava from 45 per cent to zero within 20 years, while Cambodia will do the same for tomatoes, onions, cabbage and beans.

First-quarter exports of Thai vegetables are already worth more than half the total recorded in 2020, of $1.006 billion.

Published : May 24, 2021

By : The Nation