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Vietnam back in trade surplus in second half of July
Quoc Hung
Saturday,  Aug 12, 2017,00:17 (GMT+7)

Vietnam back in trade surplus in second half of July

Quoc Hung

The country’s exports of machines, equipment and other accessories surge in the second half of July - PHOTO: QUOC HUNG

HCMC – Vietnam posted a trade surplus of US$429 million in the second half of July after falling into deficit for several months before, said the General Department of Vietnam Customs. This improvement helped push down the trade deficit in all of July.

According to the department’s data on import and export operations from July 16 to 31, the export sector brought in over US$9.41 billion, increasing by 14.1% compared to the first half of July. Import spending in the last two weeks of last month was over US$8.98 billion, up 6.5% against the first two weeks.

This led to a trade surplus of nearly US$430 million in the second half of July.

According to the General Department of Vietnam Customs, the country had a trade deficit of US$2.53 billion in the first seven months of this year, representing 2.2% of total export revenue.

January-July exports totaled over US$115.3 billion, up 18.8% over the same period last year. Meanwhile, imports in the period amounted to US$117.83 billion, up 23.6%.

At the Export Forum 2017 in HCMC on August 8, Nguyen Phu Hoa, deputy head of the Import-Export Department under the Ministry of Industry and Trade, forecast Vietnam’s trade deficit could reach about US$5 billion in all of 2017, 2.5% of total export turnover.

Hoa said the country could obtain US$200 billion from exports this year, up 13% year-on-year, while its imports would reach an estimated US$205 billion, a 17% increase.

In 2016, the nation’s trade deficit was US$2.7 billion.

Data of the General Department of Vietnam Customs shows the trade surplus in the second half of July was helped by higher export sales of some items. In particular, exports of machines, equipment, tools and other accessories surged 34.7%, or US$158 million, against July’s first half. Exports of phones and phone parts, footwear, iron and steel grew 7.5% (or US$110 million), 18.4% (or US$110 million) and 139.3% (or US$108 million) respectively.

The sectors that reported strong declines in export value included shipping with a drop of 77.3% (US$42 million), and oil with a 36.1% fall (US$13 million).

In the final two weeks of July, imports of phones and phone parts shot up 30.7%, or US$159 million, against the month’s first two weeks. Other commodities whose import rose included fuels with a 29.6% rise (or US$75 million), iron and steel with a 21% increase (or US$60 million), fertilizer with 113.6% (or US$54 million) and computers and electronic products with 3.8% (or US$54 million).

But imports of ordinary metals fell 20%, or US$50 million, and feedstuffs dipped 31.2%, or US$40 million. Imports of coal and minerals decreased 29.3% (or US$25 million) and 32.8% (or US$17 million) respectively.

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