Vietnam has overtaken China as the largest furniture exporter to the U.S. as tariffs drive manufacturers out of the world’s second largest economy.
Vietnam exported $7.4 billion worth of furniture to the U.S. last year, compared to China’s $7.33 billion, according to data from U.S. magazine Furniture Today. This marked a 31 percent year-on-year surge for Vietnam, while that of China fell 25 percent.
The shift has happened over the past two and a half years with the U.S. imposing tariffs as high as 25 percent on almost all furniture categories from China, pushing manufacturers to move out.
In 2018 and 2019, Vietnam’s furniture shipments to the U.S. rose by double digits each year, while that of China fell by double digits.
“That doesn’t surprise me at all,” said Fred Henjes, CEO of Riverside Furniture Corp. “We are no longer buying products out of China, and I know there are many others besides us.”
Strong import categories of this company from Vietnam include bedroom, dining room and home office furniture, Furniture Today quoted him as saying.
Another company, Klaussner Home Furnishings, sources all of its wood furniture from Vietnam now. Its sales in the wood segment from Vietnam were up 10 percent last year.
The U.S. was Vietnam’s largest export market in the first four months at $30.3 billion, up 50 percent, followed by China at $16.8 billion, up 32.4 percent.