ARLINGTON, Virginia — U.S. Wheat Associates (USW) is grateful to the Biden Administration and USDA’s Foreign Agricultural Service (FAS) for their work alongside Vietnam’s Ministry of Finance to reduce the cost of wheat for Vietnam’s millers and consumers by suspending the wheat import tariff. As part of a bilateral package announced during Vice President Kamala Harris’ Indo-Pacific trip, Vietnam will reduce or eliminate import tariffs on several U.S. commodities including wheat. The tariff suspensions are expected to be implemented soon and will help reduce food costs for the Vietnamese people. It will also help make U.S. wheat more competitive in Vietnam’s growing wheat market.
Vietnam, like many countries this year, has seen significant food and feed price inflation due to the rise in global commodity prices and COVID impacts on supply chains. Vietnam’s government should be commended for taking this proactive step to assist their domestic millers and consumers.
The newly announced reduction follows one from July 2020, when Vietnam reduced its tariff on imported U.S. wheat (excluding durum) from 5% to 3% in a revision of its Most Favored Nation (MFN) tariff rates. Vietnam is the last remaining Comprehensive and Progressive Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP) country applying a tariff against U.S. wheat imports but not against Canadian and Australian wheat, making today’s announcement particularly noteworthy for U.S. wheat growers.
Despite the tariffs, Vietnam’s imports of U.S. hard red spring (HRS), soft white (SW) and hard red winter (HRW) wheat exceeded 500,000 metric tons in marketing year 2020/21, second in volume only to Australia. Vietnam currently imports an average of more than 3 million metric tons of wheat per year.
The suspension of the wheat import tariff was granted because of the dedicated work between USDA/FAS, cooperator organizations and the Vietnamese importers who petitioned their government to reduce or eliminate certain MFN tariffs to help hold down rising food and feed prices.
U.S. Wheat Associates’ (USW) mission is to “develop, maintain, and expand international markets to enhance wheat’s profitability for U.S. wheat producers and its value for their customers.” USW activities in more than 100 countries are made possible through producer checkoff dollars managed by 17 state wheat commissions and cost-share funding provided by USDA’s Foreign Agricultural Service. USW maintains 15 offices strategically located around the world to help wheat buyers, millers, bakers, wheat food processors and government officials understand the quality, value and reliability of all six U.S. wheat classes. For more information, visit www.uswheat.org.
# # #