Sunday,  Jun 7, 2020,17:26 (GMT+7) 0 0
Hit by coronavirus, Vietnam’s Q1 economic growth slips to 10-year low: GSO
By Pham Nhat
Saturday,  Mar 28, 2020,09:52 (GMT+7)

Hit by coronavirus, Vietnam’s Q1 economic growth slips to 10-year low: GSO

By Pham Nhat

Workers at a packaging factory in the northern province of Hung Yen. Vietnam’s economic growth hits a 10-year low of 3.82% in the first quarter of 2020 – PHOTO: VNA

HCMC – Vietnam’s economy expanded 3.82% in the first quarter of this year, the lowest growth rate in a decade, due to the impact of the novel coronavirus pandemic, according to the General Statistics Office (GSO).

Officials from the GSO held a press briefing on March 27 to release statistics on the country’s social and economic performance between January and March this year.

Officials reported that the agriculture, forestry and fisheries sector grew a mere 0.08%, thus making a minimal contribution of 0.2% to the overall growth.

GSO pointed out that the sector is fraught with difficulties, such as the impacts of African swine fever, draught and saltwater intrusion in the Mekong Delta, and risks of bird flu outbreaks.

The coronavirus pandemic is having adverse effects on the production, import and export of farm produce, according to the agency.

Data showed that the industry and construction sector climbed 5.15%, while the services sector expanded 3.27% from one year earlier, thereby contributing 58.4% and 41.4%, respectively, to the overall growth.

GSO noted the manufacturing and processing sector, the driving force of the Vietnamese economy last year, grew 7.12%, still higher than the 4.38% and 5.97% growth rates of the same period in 2013 and 2014 during the 2011-2020 period.

Trade and services were among the hardest hit sectors by the pandemic. The service sector recorded the lowest growth for the first quarter during the 2011-2020 period, since consumers have refrained from store visits, travel trips, and eating-out.

The number of international tourist arrivals declined by 18.1% year-on-year to 3.7 million. The significant reduction was recorded in arrivals from China, South Korea and the United States.

The corporate sector was suffering the brunt of the Covid-19 crisis, as the number of firms temporarily suspending their operations rose by 26% from one year ago, to some 18,600.

Earlier, the Ministry of Planning and Investment predicted that if the pandemic is contained within the second quarter, Vietnam’s economic growth is expected to reach 5.96% in 2020, 0.84 percentage point lower than the full-year target of 6.8%.

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