(VEN) – Vietnam achieved a trade surplus of US$200 million this July reducing the trade deficit to US$733 million in the first seven months of this year.
Statistics from the Ministry of Industry and Trade show that export revenues reached US$11.2 billion in July, a 1.7 percent increase from June and a 9.8 percent increase from last July. Export earnings amounted to almost US$72.74 billion in the first seven months of this year, a 14.3 percent increase from a year ago.
High-tech exports increased progressively, with telephones and telephone accessories leading Vietnamese exports with revenues of more than US$11.6 billion and surpassing traditional exports such as textiles and garments, crude oil and footwear. Telephones, electronic ware, computers and accessories accounted for more than 20 percent of all export earnings, contributing to total industrial processed export revenues of US$50.55 billion, a 25.8 percent increase. Industrial processed exports accounted for 69.5 percent of all export revenues.
Agricultural, forest and seafood exports reached almost US$11.23 billion, reducing by 8.6 percent and accounting for 15.4 percent of all export earnings. Fuel and mineral exports stood at almost US$5.76 billion, reducing by 15 percent and accounting for 7.9 percent of all export revenues, largely due to the decline in price. The price of several exports fell sharply such as cashew nuts, pepper, rice, rubber, fossil coal, crude oil, gasoline and oil. The price of ore and other minerals dropped by 49.9 percent. For this reason export revenues reduced despite increased volumes of many export items.
Exports to Europe grew by 25.7 percent, accounting for 20.9 percent of all export revenues. Exports to the European Union (EU) in particular increased by 26.9 percent, accounting for 19 percent of all export earnings. It was followed by America increasing by 17.8 percent, Oceania up by 12.5 percent, Asia up by 11.4 percent (accounting for the largest percentage of 51 percent of all export revenues) and Africa up by 9.7 percent (accounting for 1.6 percent).
Trade deficit will be lower than target
Import purchases increased slightly in July reaching about US$11 billion and increasing by 2.6 percent from June and 11.6 percent from a year ago. Of this, imports from the foreign investment sector amounted to US$6.2 billion, increasing by 3.1 percent from June and 15.5 percent from last July.
Imports exceeded US$73.47 percent in the first seven months, a 15 percent increase from the same period last year. Import of production materials reached more than US$64.63 billion, a 14.8 percent increase, accounting for 88 percent of all imports, proving that domestic production has recovered. The importation of restricted goods increased by 15.7 percent, adversely affecting the balance of trade. Asia remained Vietnam’s largest import market growing by 17 percent and accounting for 80.8 percent of all import purchases.
Experts said that exports usually increased at the end of the year. The Ministry of Industry and Trade expected that export revenues would reach US$128 billion by the end of the year, an almost US$2 billion increase from what was projected by the National Assembly. Imports would reach US$133 billion, leading to a trade deficit of US$5 billion and accounting for 3.9 percent of export revenues compared with the National Assembly’s target of 8 percent./.