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UK- a promising market for Vietnamese vegetable and fruits: webinar

With the annual import value of vegetables and fruit amounting to more than 6 billion pounds (equivalent to 8.4 billion USD), the United Kingdom is a promising market for vegetables and fruit of Vietnam, heard a webinar organised by the Vietnam Trade Office in the UK.

The webinar drew the participation of enterprises involve in agricultural import and export enterprises of the two countries.

The event offered an opportunity for Vietnamese fruit and agricultural product exporters to directly introduce their produce to British importers, and negotiate cooperation agreements.

Vietnamese products presented at the webinar include banana, dragon fruit, mango, avocado, pineapple, guava, lychee, longan, jackfruit, coconut, cashew, pepper and coffee.

At the event, Vietnamese businesses were introduced to the Birmingham market in the Midlands. It is one of Europe's largest wholesale markets, supplying fresh produce and vegetables to hotels, restaurants, supermarkets, fast food chains and retailers across the UK.

Kevin, a representative of the Birmingham market, said that every day it welcomed 5,000 visitors. Tens to hundreds of tonnes for each item such as bananas, dragon fruit, mango, avocado, lychee, and jackfruit were consumed every day.

According to Harry Hoan Tran, Director of the Midan Global Ltd, this is a potential focal point for Vietnamese fruits and agricultural products to penetrate the UK market.

Speaking at the webinar, Ta Hoang Linh,  Director General of the European and American Market Department at Ministry of Industry and Trade, said that after the trade agreement between the two countries took effect, bilateral trade has progressed spectacularly with a total value reached 3.3 billion USD in the first six months of this year, up 28 percent over the same period last year.

The value of Vietnam's exports to the UK amounted to nearly 2.9 billion USD,  a year-on-year increase of 29 percent, despite the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The free trade agreement between Vietnam and the UK brings opportunities to access and expand markets for businesses of the two countries while promoting comprehensive, long-term and stable trade relations between the two parties, Linh said.

Nguyen Canh Cuong, Vietnamese Trade Counselor in the UK,  said it is necessary for businesses involved in export to take advantages of Vietnam - being one of the countries that signed a free trade agreement with the UK early -  to access and expand the market to this country.

He emphasised that Vietnamese businesses should seize the opportunity as the UK was looking for suppliers outside the European Union (EU) after it leaves the bloc, causing disruptions in the supply chain.

Statistics from the British Government showed that in 2019, the country imported more than 3.6 million tonnes of fruit, worth nearly 3.9 billion pounds (more than 5.4 billion USD). Vegetable imports reached 2.3 million tonnes with a total value of more than 2.5 billion pounds (more than 3.5 billion USD)./.