A recent seminar in Hamburg, Germany, jointly hosted by the Trade Office of the Vietnamese Embassy in Germany, the Vietnam Coffee Cocoa Association (VCCA), the German Coffee Association (DKV) and the Neumann Kaffee Group from 29 October to 1 November was a success.

The event, which was part of the National Trade Promotion Programme 2022, brought together Vietnamese coffee exporters and German importers.

One of the speakers at the event, Vietnamese trade advisor Bui Vuong Anh, advised businesses to take advantage of the Vietnam-Germany Joint Economic Cooperation Committee and the EU-Vietnam Free Trade Agreement (EVFTA) to increase coffee exports to Germany and the EU.

DKV chief executive Holger Preibisch said Germany imported 1.1 million tonnes of green coffee beans in 2021, while Vietnam is the second largest coffee exporter to Germany, behind Brazil, with a market share of 18.63%. He added that each German consumes 169 litres of coffee per year.

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Nguyen Thi Thu Thuy of VCCA invited German companies to Vietnam Coffee Day 2022, which will take place in Hanoi from 9 to 11 December, to establish contacts with Vietnamese partners.

After the discussions, a trade exchange programme took place to share information and explore potential business opportunities.

However, according to the website of The Centre for WTO and International Trade Vietnam Chamber of Commerce and Industry (TTWTO VCCI), Vietnamese products have to overcome a number of obstacles that the EVFTA “could hardly address”, in particular the EU’s mandatory import regulations and procedures, requirements of German importers such as food hygiene, safety certificates and more, and the demands and preferences of German consumers. There was no report on whether or not these issues were addressed at the seminar.

The EU-Vietnam Free Trade Agreement, which came into force in August 2020, is expected to lead to a further increase in bilateral trade volume and an increase in the number of German companies in Vietnam. There are currently more than 350 German companies in the Vietnamese market.

According to Vietnam’s Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, Germany was Vietnam’s largest coffee importer in the first eight months of 2022, with sales of $341 million, accounting for 12% of total export sales and 20.8% more than the same period in 2021.

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