Việt Nam's new import-export turnover record set

December 16, 2022 - 08:22
Two drivers of Việt Nam's economic growth – exports and domestic demand – are moderating, according to a report released by the World Bank (WB) on Wednesday.


Workers at Youngbag Micromotor Vietnam Co's factory in Bình Industrial Park, Vĩnh Phúc Province. — VNA/VNS Hoàng Hùng

HÀ NỘI — Việt Nam’s total import-export revenue hit the highest-ever value of US$700 billion as of December, exceeding last year’s record of $600 billion, reported the General Department of Việt Nam Customs.

Thirty-two commodities have recorded export turnover of over $1 billion, of which six items fetched $10 billion, data from the customs authority showed.

Việt Nam continues to enjoy a trade surplus that has been maintained since 2012 (except for 2015 when the country suffered a deficit of $3.55 billion).

In the first 11 months of this year, Việt Nam posted a trade surplus of $10.68 billion, of which the foreign-invested sector earned $468.7 billion, up 12.1 per cent year-on-year.

According to the General Statistics Office (GSO), over the years, the US has been the largest export market of Việt Nam, while China is the largest import market.

At the end of November, Việt Nam exported $101 billion worth of goods to the US, a year on year rise of 17.7 per cent. Meanwhile, it imported $109.46 billion worth of products from China, up 10 per cent.

Data from the World Trade Organisation showed that in 2006, the Vietnamese economy ranked 50th in the world in terms of export and 44th in imports. The rankings rose to 26th and 23rd, respectively, in 2018. Since then, Việt Nam has been among the world's top 30 countries in the fields.

Among ASEAN countries, Việt Nam ranks the second in both imports and export, only after Singapore in 2021.

In the 2002-21 period, Việt Nam’s total import-export revenue reached $5.14 trillion, with $4.11 trillion recorded in 10 years from 2012 to 2021.

Factors affecting Việt Nam’s exports 

Meanwhile, according to a report released by the World Bank (WB) on Wednesday, two drivers of Việt Nam's economic growth – exports and domestic demand – are moderating.

The bank’s December report "Vietnam Macro Monitoring" shows that softer external demand has weighed on Việt Nam’s exports. Consumer rebound in the post-COVID period seems to recover slowly and tighter domestic financial conditions and rising inflation could affect domestic demand in the future.

Due to weaker external demand, the growth of industrial production in November declined by 5.3 per cent year-on-year, the lowest rate since February 2022. The manufacturing Purchase Manager Index (PMI) also slipped below the 50 benchmark for the first time since October last year.

Retail sales decreased to 17.5 per cent in November from 20.7 per cent in the previous month.

Merchandise exports contracted by 8.4 per cent year-on-year due to weakening external demand and high base effects associated with the rebound in the four quarters of 2021. While total foreign direct investment (FDI) commitment dropped by 1.9 per cent year-on-year, FDI disbursement maintained a robust growth of 4.4 per cent compared with the same period last year.

Consumer Price Index (CPI) inflation reached 4.4 per cent year-on-year in November, up 0.1 per cent compared to a month earlier, with food and housing being two major contributors. Core inflation increased from 4.5 per cent in October to 4.8 per cent in November.

Credit growth fell from 16.5 per cent in October to 15 per cent in November, as domestic financial conditions tightened after the State Bank of Vietnam (SBV) raised key interest rates in September and October. Average overnight interbank interest rate remained high at 5.7 per cent in November.

The SBV announced a 1.5-2 per cent increase of the credit growth cap in early December. The Vietnamese currency, the dong, gained slightly in value in November although its appreciation is one of the smallest compared to major currencies and those of its neighbours.

As of the end of November, the national budget registered a US$12.1 billion surplus, equivalent to about 3 per cent of GDP.

The WB recommended that Vietnamese monetary authorities consider allowing further flexibility in the exchange rate to absorb changes in the external environment as global financing conditions are expected to remain tight and external demand is weakening.

Fiscal and monetary policy coordination will be critical to ensure price stability in the context of accelerating domestic core inflation, it said, adding that a more prudent and prioritised expenditure strategy is needed to ensure investments in human capital and resilient and green infrastructure to help bolster economic potential and resilience. — VNS