Rubbers exports increase in 2000

Ha Noi, Jan. 3 (VNA) -- Viet Nam exported about 280,000 tonnes of latex worth USD 170 million last year - a rise of almost 16 percent over 1999.

The higher exports signal the industry's emergence from the 1999 crisis in rubber prices. The year 2000 also saw Viet Nam's latex exports to China meet quotas totalling 10,000 tonnes.

In addition, a niche for Viet Nam's latex was found in the Republic of Korea after that country's traders conceded that the quality of Viet Nam's latex matched that of Malaysia. Rubber industry sources now say that the RoK will become a prospective market for Viet Nam's rubber in the near future.

The rubber industry sends about 15,000 tonnes of latex each year to Japan, the RoK and Malaysia.

It plans to raise latex output of Tay Ninh, Binh Long and Dau Tieng to 20,000 tonnes this year through investments in building seven new latex-producing facilities in those provinces.

However, the industry's major product remains latex SVR 3L, while its SVR 10 and 20 products, used to produce vehicle tyres and tubes, are only 11 percent of the total.

This low figure explains why the industry has just missed a chance to export large quantities of SVR 10 and 20 latex to the United States.--VNA