Trade deficit returns to haunt Vietnam


Vietnam had faced a trade deficit of US$1.21 billion in the year to mid-February, which resulted from shipments of some key export earners dipping, according to data of the General Department of Customs.

he country’s total export and import turnover in the first half of this month was US$14.22 billion, a 10.9% rise against the previous half. 

The total in the first one month and a half reached around US$41.65 billion, up 25% over the same period last year.

The foreign direct investment (FDI) sector exported US$9.3 billion worth of goods in the first half of this month, a 13.1% increase against the previous half. 

As of February 15, its import-export turnover reached nearly US$26.89 billion, up 25.2% year-on-year.

The sector generated a trade surplus of over US$1.55 billion in the year to the middle of this month.

Vietnam registered outbound sales of US$5.89 billion in the first half of this month, falling 15.9% over a half month earlier. 

The export decline resulted from strong slides in key export products. Apparel fell by 53.4%, or US$625 million; footwear by 29.3%, or US$159 million; wooden products by 44.3%, or US$133 million; handbags, wallets, suitcases, hats and umbrellas by 57.4%, or US$90 million; and vehicles and parts by 28%, or US$82 million.

But exports in the year to mid-February reached US$20.22 billion, up 18.5% from the year-ago period.

Imports in the first half of this month totaled US$8.34 billion, up 43.3% over a half month earlier. As such, the country’s import bill in the year to mid-February amounted to US$21.43 billion, a year-on-year rise of 31.7%.

Import of computers, electronics and components surged 38.7% (or US$387 million) compared to the previous half month; machinery, equipment and parts 35% (US$352 million); plastic materials 87.9% (US$151 million); iron and steel 52.1% (US$138 million); phones and phone parts 28.4% (US$115 million).

Import of fuels decreased 30.9% (or US$94 million), 69.3% (or US$25 million) in soybeans, and 19.1% (or US$15 million) in corn.


Photo: CBR Investment AG