HA NOI — The domestic industrial production index in May increased 4.4 per cent over the previous month, the Ministry of Industry and Trade said yesterday.
|Coats being made for export at Ha Phong Garment Joint Stock Co in northern Bac Giang Province. The trade deficit is estimated to have reached US$622 million in the first five months of the year, accounting for 1.45 per cent of total export turnover. — VNA/VNS Photo Tran Viet
While the processing and power, gas and water distribution sectors rose 5.2 per cent and 1.2 per cent respectively, the mining industry declined 3.7 per cent over April, the ministry said at a meeting in Ha Noi.
The index increased 6.8 per cent compared to last May. In the first five months it went up by 4.2 per cent compared to the same period last year.
Of the three sectors, processing industries grew 3.8 per cent compared to 12.6 per cent last year.
The index had improved over the first quarter but it had dropped significantly compared to the same period in previous years," said Deputy Minister Hoang Quoc Vuong.
"It hints at lots of difficulties within the industrial sector, especially the processing field," Vuong said.
Concerns over what was termed the inadequate reduction in petrol and gas prices were raised at the meeting, as global prices had fallen further than domestic rates.
"Petrol prices cannot be correspondingly reduced to international levels, considering the benefits of the State and petrol enterprises," said a representative of the domestic market management team.
Meanwhile, lifting the price stabilisation fund to support the petrol price was still the main measure.
The Ministry of Industry and Trade said it would co-operate with the Ministry of Finance to work with gas dealers in a programme to ease gas prices.
In addition, trade deficit data was also released yesterday. The figure was estimated to reach US$622 million in the first five months of the year, accounting for 1.45 per cent of total export turnover.
Viet Nam still reported higher imports than exports with some Asian markets, such as mainland China ($5.3 billion), ASEAN region ($2.5 billion), South Korea ($3.7 billion) and Taiwan ($2.7 billion).
However, foreign invested companies, excluding those involving crude oil, posted a trade surplus of $960 million.
In order to both boost exports and tackle high inventories, the market management team said, businesses should seek more ways to promote trade and expand their distribution networks.
One possible measure was to actively co-ordinate with banks and their own investors. — VNS