VIDA proposes solutions to rescue business from COVID-19 impact

Thursday, Mar 26, 2020 16:53

A wood production line at Da Lat Wood Production Company Ltd, in the southern province of Lam Dong.— VNA/VNS Photo

The Vietnam Digital Agriculture Association (VIDA) proposed the Government increase updates of accurate market information and the developments of the COVID-19 outbreak, helping businesses balance their imports with domestic consumption as well as setting operation plans.

Based on updated information, businesses will reduce the amount of imported goods, especially agricultural products that are produced domestically, in order to boost consumption of domestic products.

VIDA urged local animal health and customs departments to expedite licensing and clearance of goods, avoid long-term congestion at ports, causing expensive storage costs. It is necessary to stimulate packages of investment loans to help farmers ensure raw materials for processing plants, while boosting co-operation with foreign buyers to reduce inventories.

VIDA said it is currently supporting its members to strengthen connectivity with domestic and foreign buyers, especially large buyers such as Central Group, AEON and Vincommerce, to promote consumption of agricultural products through supermarkets and the convenience store system throughout the country. It also collaborates with some e-commerce platforms including Sendo to serve customers when they can’t shop offline due to the coronavirus.

The recommendations were made after VIDA conducted a survey of its 50 member businesses early this week.

VIDA General Secretary Nguyen Duc Tung said the biggest loss belongs to the group of wood material businesses with an estimated value of VND260 billion, due to contract delays and inventory.

The second group is coffee, pepper and cashew with inventories of 43,000 tonnes, estimated losses of VND50 billion. It’s followed by about 1,000 tonnes of seafood products worth of VND35 billion, and 100 tonnes of processed products, fresh fruits and vegetables with VND50 billion. In addition to losses of food materials, fertilisers inventory reached VND15 billion.

Tung said up to 80 per cent of businesses confirmed that their trade and operation are heavily affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. In the first quarter of this year, the businesses revenue decreased by 30-50 per cent on average, with some enterprises reducing up to 70 per cent year-on-year.

“The financial pressure and interest rates are now a burden for businesses which are trying to maintain fixed costs but revenue is declining. Large inventories lead to increased storage costs,” Tung said.

Businesses supplying food for schools, restaurants and hotels are seriously affected due to students being absent for more than two months and a lack of foreign visitors. — VNS

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