Vietnam has become one of the top 10 exporters of garments and textiles globally with USD 5.8 billion in export value in 2006. The country targets USD 7 billion for 2007 and USD 10 to USD 12 billion by 2010.
Since 2006, five new private textile companies with capacity of 100,000 spindles or more have opened. The increased investments have created greater demand for cotton in the country, which already relies heavily on imports to feed its mills.
According to Vietnam’s Customs Office, in 2005/06, Vietnam imported over 700000 thousand bales of cotton fiber with a value of USD 178 million. Cotton imports through the first 9 months (August–April) of marketing year 2006/07 were 736000 bales, almost 5% more than total imports for the entire 2005/2006 season.
Observers of Asian markets estimate Vietnam’s 2006/07 cotton imports will grow to 964000 bales to keep pace with demand from the textile industry. Cotton imports for 2007/08 are expected to increase by 5% to 7% percent to 220000 metric tons (1mln bales).
Vietnam’s top cotton suppliers are as follows: West Africa, USA, India, Mexico and C.I.S..