Cashew growers seek bailout (07-03-2009) HCM CITY — The Viet Nam Cashew Association (Vinacas) yesterday called on the Government to help the cashew industry, which is facing declining exports because of the global economic downturn. At a conference yesterday in HCM City, Vinacas chairman Nguyen Duc Thanh said the Government should grant certificates of land-use rights to growers and encourage industry investors by creating favourable bank loan conditions. Viet Nam last year led the world in cashew export sales for the second time. The Government should also consider lending to exporters to help them buy raw cashews for processing and export, he said. Vinacas has already asked the Government to exempt import duties on raw cashews which will be processed for export. Thanh said government financial support was also necessary to undertake new trade promotion efforts in markets at home and abroad. Exporters have been adjusting their import volume so they can buy their entire raw cashew materials from local growers, according to Doan Xuan Hoa, deputy head of the Department of Farming, Forest and Fisheries Processing and Salt Industry under the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development. Nguyen Van Hoa, deputy head of the Plantation Department, said cashew companies must work together to increase production, purchasing and processing. He also advised them to use advanced technology to maintain international competitiveness, and conduct research and diversify exports. “Building a trademark for Vietnamese cashew products is one of the most important factors to help the sector stabilise and develop,” Thanh said….