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Friday, June 14, 2024

The growing trade surplus

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For eight consecutive years, Vietnam has recorded a trade surplus but 2023 was a very special year as the trade surplus soared to an all-time high of US$28.3 billion. This achievement, however, needs a serious analysis to make a good calculation for the next development stage. The merchandise trade surplus in 2023 must be placed in the context of comparison with imports and with the year-ago performance. According to the General Statistics Office (GSO), the total export-import value in 2023 is estimated at US$683 billion, a decrease of 6.6% against the previous year, with a 4.4% decrease in exports and an 8.9% decrease in imports. As the import spending decreased at a rate twice that of the export revenue, the gap between exports and imports increased, leading to a higher trade surplus than in 2022. This is viewed from a technical perspective. Looking at the essence, first, it must be determined: who achieves the trade surplus? GSO data showed that the foreign direct investment (FDI) sector recorded over US$256.9 billion in exports, and over US$210 billion in imports, excluding crude oil, resulting in a surplus of nearly US$46.9 billion. For the domestic economic sector, exports reached US$95.55 billion, and imports […]
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