Vietnam should be careful about exporting sugar because there not may be enough sugar for domestic demands, an agriculture official said, referring to a proposal by the Vietnam Sugar Association to export 250,000 tons of sugar this year.
Doan Xuan Hoa, deputy head of the Agro-Forestry-Aquatic Product Trading, Processing and Salt Industry Department, said that approval for the proposal was unlikely in the immediate future.
Currently, the sugar crop has yet to end, and thus the sugar production volume and the domestic demand this year have not been known, Hoa said.
However, the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development and the Ministry of Industry and Trade will have a meeting to consider the sugar association’s proposal.
Even if sugar is to be exported, according to the department, the amount will not be substantial.
The Vietnam Sugar Association has sent a dispatch to seek approval from central authorities for exporting 250,000 tons of sugar this year to address surplus and buoy up prices.
According to the sugar association, the sugar production volume of the 2011-2012 crop will be 1.43 million tons, plus 70,000 tons imported under the quota pledged when Vietnam joined the World Trade Organization and 100,000 tons in the stockpile, making up a total of 1.6 million tons.
Meanwhile, the domestic demand this year is estimated to be around 1.3 million tons, and there will be an extra amount of 300,000 tons.
As a result, the association has asked for approval to export 250,000 tons this year while the remaining amount of 50,000 tons will be used to stabilize the domestic market when necessary.
Ahead of the lunar New Year, the wholesale price of sugar at factories was more than VND18,000 a kg inclusive of value-added tax, but it has dropped to VND16,000, or a fall of over 10 percent.
Previously, the Ministry of Industry and Trade has allowed the department to export 30,000 tons of sugar which has not all been shipped abroad.