Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam’s largest economic hub, recorded a positive economic growth rate in May and throughout the first five months of 2015, a conference heard on May 28.

According to the municipal People’s Committee, total retail sales of goods and services are estimated at over 54.3 trillion VND (2.49 billion USD) for May and more than 267 trillion VND (12.28 billion USD) for the January-May period, up by 10.8 percent compared to the same period last year.

The city’s Consumer Price Index rose by 0.3 percent in May against the previous month. This month, the export turnover is estimated at 2.57 billion USD and import turnover at 2.67 billion USD.

During the first five months, more than 113.7 trillion VND (5.23 billion USD) was collected for the city budget, up by 4.7 percent year on year.

Most notably, the city’s index for industrial production is estimated to increase by 6 percent compared to the same period in 2014.

The Director of the municipal Department of Planning and Investment, Thai Van Re, said domestic and foreign investors alike also recorded positive results in the city.

As of May 20, the city granted investment licenses to 207 projects worth a total of 672.7 million USD, 72.5 percent more projects than during the same period last year. Meanwhile, 390 million USD was added to 68 existing projects.

The Chairman of the municipal People’s Committee, Le Hoang Quan, called upon local departments and authorities to focus on helping enterprises overcome difficulties in production and operations.

Localities were asked to develop industry, renovate technologies, increase competitiveness and improve product quality.

In order to maintain Ho Chi Minh City’s rate of economic growth, the committee prioritised intensifying trade and investment promotion efforts, expanding potential markets, and strengthening the connectivity between enterprises and banks.-VNA