VPA Chairman Ho Duc Lam highlighted the efforts of local plastic producers in pushing plastic input material exports up 57% to a 2013 revenue exceeding US$407 million.
Vietnam’s plastics industry is expecting to grow an additional 13.5–16.5% during 2014.
Lam said producing the input material for plastics involves advanced technology, generating higher-value exports than common plastic products.
The VPA Chairman noted Vietnam’s plastics are used in agriculture, industry, telecommunications, and construction all over the world.
Plastics turnover was estimated at US$2.2 billion in 2013, 13% higher than a year earlier.
Lam said six of the 20 plastic categories exported to foreign markets generated more than US$100 million in turnover. Plastic bags, film, and garbage bags earned over US$150 million.
Plastic bag exports were up 27%, an improvement almost equalled by plastic interior decorations and furnishings’ 26.4% rise.
Out of the 151 countries and territories importing Vietnam's plastics, Japan, the US, Germany, and the European Union were standout customers.
Japan imports the most Vietnamese plastic products, with purchases totalling US$401 million and accounting for 19.9% of Vietnam's total plastics exports.
China has replaced the US as the second largest consumer of Vietnam's plastic exports, buying US$279 million or 14% of total plastics exports in 2013.
Lam urged local plastic producers and exporters to deepen their understanding of domestic and international markets, expand where possible and prudent, and guarantee the quality levels that lead to sustainable export growth.
Long-term strategy is essential to negotiating trade barriers and securing success abroad, he noted.
The VPA leader identified India and Brazil as two promising emerging markets. Vietnamese plastic exporters should capitalise on their advantages over regional Southeast Asian rivals in Cambodia, Thailand, Malaysia, and Singapore.