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    Southeast Asia
     Aug 27, 2005
Vietnam's exports top $20.35bn

HANOI - Vietnam has grossed an export turnover of US$20.35 billion from exports in the past eight months, an increase of 18.7% as compared to the same period last year.

Foreign-invested enterprises have registered a year-on-year rise of 69.3%, and domestically-run enterprises, a 30.7% increase. With a total export turnover of over $4.58 billion, crude oil has taken the lead in export value. However, coal exports have registered the highest year-on-year growth rate of 91%, a result of the increased demand for coal in France, China and Japan recently and the high quality of Vietnamese coal.

The main agricultural and industrial products such as rice, groundnut, vegetables and fruits; plastic products, computers, and electronic appliances obtained remarkable growth rates ranging


from 33-55%. Wooden products maintained a stable growth rate with an export turnover of US$966 million, up by 47.3%.

Textile and garment enterprises have gradually lost their position among the country's main export items, with a growth rate of only 0.7%. If they do not raise competitiveness they will continue to fail.

The Ministries of Trade and Industry will continue to grant visas automatically for textile and garments exported to the US. The Ministry of Finance has also decided to remove quota fees for textile and garment products for export to this market. These solutions are expected to help the textile and garment sector improve their situation.

It is estimated that the export turnover for the entire year will reach about $31.4 billion, $1 billion more than the target set by the National Assembly. This will help the nation achieve the year's target of a GDP growth rate of 9.3% or upwards.

However, domestic experts and managers worry about the trade deficit; in the first eight months of this year, imports reached nearly $24.2 billion, 20% higher than the same period last year.

Imports of production materials have not increased much while imports of fully-assembled cars and motorbikes continued to rise, causing an increase in petrol consumption.

(Asia Pulse/VNA)


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