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The rise of Vietnam’s chemical industry will affect the international trade of which Sino-Vietnamese chemicals?

Vietnam Chemical
Vietnam Chemical

Vietnam’s Vietnam Plus reported on July 28 that in the first seven months of 2022, Vietnam attracted foreign direct investment (FDI) totaling $15.41 billion, equivalent to 92.9% of the same period last year. Among them, the total agreed investment in newly approved projects reached US$5.27 billion, down 43.5% year-on-year; the total agreed capital increase in capital increase projects reached US$7.24 billion, up 59.3% year-on-year; the total investment in M&A of shares of foreign investors reached US$2.58 billion, up 25.7% year-on-year. in the first seven months of 2022, the actual capital in place for foreign investment projects reached US$11.57 billion, up 10.2%, up 1.3 percentage points from the first six months.
From 2021 to 2022, several Chinese companies are planning to invest in Vietnam, including chemical fiber and textile, dyestuff and paint sectors in the chemical industry chain.

The investment in Vietnam’s manufacturing industry is likely to drive the downstream market to drive the rapid growth of the chemical industry chain, and many successful chemical companies and industrial clusters in China are relying on the “bottom-up” development model. Pingtou believes that the possibility of rapid development of Vietnam’s chemical industry is relatively large, and it may only be a matter of time.

As an important neighbor of China, Vietnam is also an important consumer country in Southeast Asia. The rapid development of Vietnam’s chemical industry will have some direct or indirect effects on China’s chemical industry. China is an important supplier of chemical products to Vietnam, among which in some chemical products, Vietnam is an important international trading country for China.

I. From the international trade of chemicals exported from China to Vietnam, the following conclusions can be seen.

1, China’s exports to Vietnam of chemicals, mainly fertilizer products accounted for the largest proportion, of which China’s exports to Vietnam in 2021 ammonium sulfate reached about 1.16 million tons, is the largest scale of China’s exports of chemicals to Vietnam, China’s exports to Vietnam of ammonium sulfate, accounting for 11% of China’s total exports of ammonium sulfate, is China’s important ammonium sulfate exporting countries.
Regarding other fertilizer products, China’s exports to Vietnam in 2021 reached around 440,000 tons of diammonium hydrogen phosphate and disodium sulfate at around 420,000 tons, which are the top ranking products among China’s chemical exports to Vietnam. The lack of natural gas resources in Vietnam has led to the small scale of the local fertilizer industry and the lack of support for the scale of the refinery end, which has also caused a shortage of fertilizer supply in Vietnam, of which the supply gap mainly relies on China to supplement.
2, In addition, among the oil products exported by China, aviation kerosene is the largest in scale, at around 240,000 tons, as well as diesel, petroleum asphalt, gasoline and other products, all of which are exported to Vietnam in large quantities by China. Vietnam has only 2 oil refineries, and the local supply of oil products in Vietnam is seriously insufficient, with import dependency reaching 25% and above, mostly needing China and neighboring countries to supplement their exports.
However, there are four refineries planned for Vietnam in the future, as well as integrated refining and chemical enterprises, which may alleviate the oil supply shortage in Vietnam. However, the planned refineries need to be commissioned in the next 5-8 years, and to alleviate the shortage of supply in the short term, it still needs to be supplemented by imported resources from neighboring countries.
3. Among the products exported from China to Vietnam, most of them are mainly energy-based products. In addition to oil and related products, there are chemicals such as propane, butane and PTA. Due to the low level and small scale of Vietnam’s chemical industry, the overall supply scale of chemicals is less than 5 million tons/year, which basically cannot meet the development needs of Vietnam.
Among the Chinese textile enterprises investing in Vietnam, most of them value the low labor cost of Vietnam, but the supply of raw materials, at present, still need to import from Vietnam’s neighboring countries to supplement.

Second, from the international trade of chemicals exported from Vietnam to China, the following conclusions can be seen.

1. For the chemical products exported from Vietnam to China, the largest product is PX, the scale of export to China in 2021 is around 340,000 tons, accounting for 2.5% of the total import volume of PX in China, which is a very small percentage. Due to the small scale of Vietnam’s oil refining, the scale of by-product aromatics products is also small, of which the volume of PX production is less than 1 million tons. According to a rough survey, there is no PTA production in Vietnam, which also leads to the need to export PX to digest, thus causing the export of PX to China, which has become an important way and way to sell PX products in Vietnam.
2. Vietnam exports less than 100,000 tons of polypropylene products to China, which has a relatively small impact on China’s polypropylene industry. However, it should be noted in particular that with the rapid development of the local plastic products industry in Vietnam, the development of plastic products has led to an increase in demand for its raw materials, which may lead to a situation where all Vietnamese polypropylene is used for its own use in the later years.
3, from Vietnam’s exports to China can also see that the product range is significantly less than the imported types, Vietnam’s chemical industry is mainly import-oriented, less exports is the inevitable performance of the shortcomings of the Vietnamese chemical industry chain.

The opportunity is in Vietnam’s future adjustment of chemical varieties, from downstream to upstream, from the resource endowment, there are some varieties of Vietnam will increase imports, these are opportunities for Chinese international trade enterprises. Of course, there are some varieties of imports may be reduced, but now the volume is not large, the impact on our trade enterprises is not big.

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