Vietnam is calling on its citizens to buy lychee, one of Vietnam’s main exports to China, in a bid to reduce its economic dependence on its giant neighbor, China Daily reported.
The lychee harvest is in full swing in northern Vietnam’s Hai Duong province, but fewer Chinese traders have come to buy the fruit this summer in the wake of anti-China riots earlier this year.
“If 90 million Vietnamese people are consuming lychee, the farmers will have no problem selling them,” the report quoted a high-ranking government official as saying.
The government has stepped up efforts in shipping the sweet and juicy fruit to the southern part of the country, and officials said farmers have already sold 60 to 70 percent of their production.
In addition, the government is also looking to diversify its trading partners, and is seeking to attract consumers from nontraditional markets such as eastern Europe, the Middle East and Africa, the report said.
The Vietnamese government is preparing in case tensions with China worsen, as when the latter restricts or closes the border, which is expected to inflict great harm on its economy. Still, the government is sticking to its economic growth target of 5.8 percent for this year.
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