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Aid Needed to Counter Difficulties with US$ Payments

VIET NAM - The Vietnam Association of Seafood Exporters and Producers (VASEP) is asking the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MARD), for a rescue package for producers against US$ export payments.

Tran Thien Hai, Chairman of VASEP, says that seafood processors get payment for export consignments in US dollar, while they need VND to buy materials for production. The problem lies in the fact that seafood exporters cannot sell dollars to banks to get VND.

VASEP has urged MARD to work with the State Bank of Vietnam to ask commercial banks to buy dollars from seafood exporters at the exchange rates announced by the State Bank of Vietnam and with no surcharges. It has also urged MARD to ask the Government to apply the measures on compensating farmers and fishermen for the losses caused by higher fuel prices, so that they can continue going fishing.

According to Viet Nam Net, VASEP believes MARD should ask the Government to ease the currency pressures appear top be causing difficulties between production and exports. Such losses could push farmers and fishermen to bankruptcy.

Currently, many seafood processing companies have a lot of dollars in their accounts, but still have to borrow VND from banks with high interest rates. Meanwhile, the production cost has become higher due to the increased material prices, which have been making businesses suffer loss. A lot of companies still have to maintain production to fulfill the signed contracts.

VASEP is encouraging its members to use other foreign currencies instead of the US dollar.

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Ellen Hardy

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