The Vietnamese Ministry of Trade has revealed that some of this year's quotas for products exported to the EU have nearly been used up.

According to officials, by 22 February around 62.9 per cent of the quota for T-shirts and polo shirts had been filled, while for trousers it is as high as 73.5 per cent. By mid-March the shipment of shirts had also reached around half the volume allowed to the market.

Garment and textile export turnover in the first four months of this year was up 6 per cent to $608 million compared with the same period last year. The country expects to raise this figure to $2.4billion by the end of the year.

At the annual meeting of the International Textile and Clothing Bureau (ITCB) in Hanoi this week, Dang Vu Chu, the Vietnamese Minister of Industry, said the garment and textile industry was still suffering from discriminatory and protective policies at the hands of major importers.

He also called on international garment and textile exporters to help dismantle international trade barriers.

The ITCB meeting is being attended by members of the bureau, as well as representatives from international organisations from the EU, Japan and the US.