Seaports are bearing negative impacts from the COVID-19 pandemic as the major partners of Vietnam are reducing orders. However, experts still see positive prospects.
If the epidemic continues to last and large economies like the US, EU and China are seriously affected, import and export activities will bear negative influences.
SSI warned that Vietnam’s exports to China will bear adverse impacts in Q1 2020 because of decreased consumption in the country in Covid-19.
Bao Viet Securities estimated that vegetable and fruit export turnover may decrease by 13.4 percent. The textile and garment indutry will also see an export turnover decrease of $4.5 billion, a drop of 7.6 percent.
As of the end of February, the total import/export turnover had been estimated at $74 billion, an increase of 2.4 percent. Of this, export turnover was $36.9 billion, up by 2.4 percent, and import turnover $37.1 billion, up by 1 percent.
|As of the end of February, the total import/export turnover had been estimated at $74 billion, an increase of 2.4 percent. Of this, export turnover was $36.9 billion, up by 2.4 percent, and import turnover $37.1 billion, up by 1 percent.|
As such, the economy is witnessing an excess of imports over exports, in contrast to the state of continuous trade surplus in 2019.
However, the impact of the epidemic on Vietnam’s exports remain unclear as exports to some markets have increased slightly.
According to Bao Viet Securities, exports to China in the first two months of the year brought $4.8 billion, a slight increase of 3.7 percent.
The US remains the biggest export market with an increase of 19.6 percent.
The decreases in export turnover were seen in some markets, including the EU (- 7.7 percent), ASEAN (- 9.3 percent) and South Korea (- 6.5 percent).
“If the epidemic is contained and stopped prior to Q2, the impact will not be big, because the trade exchange demand is always low in Q1,” a fund investment expert on maritime and logistics stocks said.
Seaport developers said the epidemic has not had a big impact on business prospects yet, though the consequences will be serious if it lasts a long time.
“The current impact is not big because the demand for trade is not high at this moment,” a senior executive of Gemadept said.
Despite Covid-19, experts still give optimistic forecasts about the prospects of the seaport sector in medium and long terms. KB Vietnam Securities said Vietnam is still an attractive destination forFDI flow thanks to the labor force, stable macroeconomic conditions and improved business environment.
Deep-water seaports in Vietnam can receive large-tonnage vessels. Meanwhile, a report says over 70 percent of vessels to be built have capacity of over 10,000 TEU.
The number of ships docking at Vietnamese seaports has fallen due to COVID-19 pandemic, but the volume of goods passing through the ports has recorded impressive growth.
The Vietnam Maritime Administration (VMA) has reported that the total arrivals of vessels leaving or entering Vietnamese seaports from China or countries hit by COVID-19 outbreak neared 6,790 as of the early March.