HCMC – The coronavirus pandemic has severely affected many provinces and cities nationwide that are heavily dependant on tourism and related services, leaving their economies contracting during the first half of this year, stated Nguyen Thi Huong, vice general director of the General Statistics Office (GSO).
Data from the GSO revealed that the 12 provinces and cities that posted a negative economic growth in the first half comprised Vinh Phuc, Bac Ninh, Hoa Binh, Danang, Quang Nam, Phu Yen, Khanh Hoa, Ba Ria-Vung Tau, Ben Tre, Hau Giang, Soc Trang and Ca Mau.
Of these, the central city of Danang saw its gross regional domestic product (GRDP) drop by 3.61%, while that of Quang Nam and Khanh Hoa provinces dipped 11.51% and 12.02%, respectively.
Apart from the heavy reliance on tourists, the economies of some localities are also controlled by the foreign direct investment (FDI) sector. As the pandemic has triggered delays in the exports of FDI companies, the economic growth of these localities has been hindered, Huong noted.
Dr Vu Sy Cuong, an instructor at the Academy of Finance, admitted that it was understandable that the localities with a heavy reliance on tourism would record negative growth, as the entire country was going all out to combat Covid-19 at that time.
With the drastic measures taken to contain the spread of Covid-19, Danang, Khanh Hoa, Quang Nam and Ba Ria-Vung Tau, where tourism plays a crucial role, were bound to encounter greater impacts than other localities, Cuong added.
In Danang alone, the tourism and services sector annually contributes as much as 64% to the city’s GRDP and it was hit first and the hardest by this public health crisis, an economic expert told Tuoi Tre newspaper.
However, some experts forecast that this central city still has room for further growth, with its plan to boost the supporting industry expected to encourage growth. In addition, Danang can stimulate its growth by facilitating public investments and capital disbursements for major projects.