Trade surplus reaches $15.23B in seven months

July 29, 2023 | 09:06 pm PT
Trade surplus reaches $15.23B in seven months
A container ship is seen at Tan Cang Cai Mep Terminal in the southern province of Ba Ria-Vung Tau. Photo by VnExpress/Dang Khoa
Vietnam recorded a trade surplus of about US$15.23 billion in the first seven months of this year, an increase of 1.34% year-on-year, according to data released by the General Statistics Office of Vietnam (GSO) on Saturday.

The total import-export turnover of goods hit $374.23 billion, posting a year-over-year decrease of 13.9%. Specifically, export value fell by 10.6% and import value 17.1%.

In the period, there are 30 items with export turnover of over $1 billion, accounting for 91.6% of the total export turnover at $194.7 billion. Particularly, five items posted an export turnover of more than $10 billion, accounting for 57.6%.

Meanwhile, import turnover was estimated at $179.5 billion, decreasing by 17.1% over the same period last year including $64.1 billion from the domestic economic sector and the remaining $115.4 billion from the foreign-invested sector.

Regarding the structure of imported goods in the past seven months, production materials accounted for 93.8% of total import value with $168.3 billion. Consumer goods accounted for only 6.2% ($11.2 billion).

The U.S. was Vietnam's largest export market with an estimated turnover of $52.4 billion, and China was Vietnam's largest import market with an estimated turnover of $58.6 billion.

In the last seven months, Vietnam's trade surplus with the U.S. was estimated at $44.3 billion, down 24.1% over the same period last year while its trade surplus with the EU was $16.4 billion, down 11.9%. Vietnam posted a trade deficit of $0.9 billion with Japan.

According to a GSO representative, many key export products of Vietnam are facing difficulties because of the sharp decrease in global market demand. A large trade surplus that the economy continued to post has raised concerns that industrial production and exports will continue to face difficulties in the coming time. As Vietnam's economy depends heavily on imported raw materials, the decrease in imports shows that enterprises are still short of orders, so there is no need to import input materials.

In the coming time, to further improve import and export efficiency, the Ministry of Industry and Trade will focus on renewing and promoting trade promotion activities targeting new markets and potential ones such as India, Africa, the Middle East, Latin America and Eastern Europe as well as those less affected by inflation like ASEAN countries.

In addition, exporters also need to effectively take advantage of free trade agreements (FTAs), and facilitate and enhance digital transformation in the granting of preferential certificates of origin.

Director of the Trade Remedies Department under the Ministry of Industry and Trade Trinh Anh Tuan said that in the context of international economic integration, domestic manufacturing and exporting industries must constantly improve their competitiveness, improve production organization to be able to compete equally with imported goods in the domestic market.

The ministry has been coordinating with relevant associations and units to closely monitor the production and import situation to promptly take appropriate measures to protect domestic manufacturers' legitimate rights and interests, he said.

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