Asia Coffee-Vietnam domestic prices edge lower on movement curbs, high shipping cost

Domestic coffee prices in Vietnam fell slightly on Thursday compared to a week ago, as pandemic-related mobility restrictions and hefty shipping costs stymied purchases.

Farmers in Vietnam’s Central Highlands offered coffee COFVN-DAK for 34,600-35,500 dong ($1.50-$1.54) per kilogramme, down from 34,800-36,200 dong a week earlier.

“Imminent coronavirus movement restrictions are likely to substantially hinder internal transactions, while high shipping prices continue to limit coffee outflows,” said a merchant in Dak Lak, a region in the Central Highlands.

To combat a coronavirus epidemic, Vietnam will impose stringent mobility restrictions in Ho Chi Minh City for 15 days starting Friday. The city is home to the country’s most important port for exporting goods.

According to an independent market expert, the mobility restrictions are unlikely to have a significant influence on Vietnam’s coffee export pricing.

“Coffee exporters have already been experiencing high shipping costs owing to container shortages, with or without the domestic movement limitations,” the expert added. “Even if shipping costs were to skyrocket, finding empty vessels would be difficult.”

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