Vietnam’s trade deficit was estimated at 3.08 billion USD in the first seven months of this year. (Photo: VNA)

Hanoi (VNA) - Vietnam’s trade deficit was estimated at 3.08 billion USD in the first seven months of this year, according to the latest data released by the General Statistics Office (GSO).

The trade deficit from January-July equaled 2.7 percent of the country’s export revenue in the period, GSO said.

The office said the trade deficit was driven by an upward trend in imports, due to high demand for manufacturing, processing, and exporting.

During the period, the trade deficit incurred by the domestic sector totaled 14.7 billion USD, while the foreign-invested sector continued its trade deficit with a mark of 11.69 billion USD.

Import turnover during the first seven months jumped by 24 percent year-on-year to 118.3 billion USD, with imports by the domestic sector touching 46.9 billion USD, an 18.4 percent increase, while those of the foreign-invested sector were 71.4 billion USD, an increase of 24 percent.

The import value registered a year-on-year surge of 37.4 percent for machines, equipment, tools and components to reach 21.4 billion USD, 30.6 percent for telephone and its components to reach 7.3 billion USD, 27.4 percent for electronic products, computer and their components to reach 19.2 billion USD and 16.7 percent for steel to reach 5.2 billion USD.

China still accounted for the largest share of Vietnam’s imports at 31.7 billion USD, a year-on-year surge of 15.8 percent. The Republic of Korea and ASEAN came second and third with 26.7 billion USD and 16 billion USD, respectively.

Meanwhile, export turnover during the seven months rose 18.7 percent year-on-year to 115.2 billion USD. Of the estimate, exports by the domestic sector totaling 32.2 billion USD, a 14.6 percent increase, while those of the foreign-invested sector reached 83.1 billion USD, an increase of 20.3 percent.

The first seven months of 2017 continued to see steady growth of Vietnam’s main exports, with phones and components up 15 percent to 22.6 billion USD, garments up 8.1 percent to 14.2 billion USD and footwear up 12.9 percent to 8.4 billion USD.

Other key exports such as machinery, seafood, timber and coffee posted strong growth.

The United States remained the largest consumer of Vietnamese goods at 23.4 billion USD, followed by the EU and China at 21.5 billion USD and 15.5 billion USD, respectively.-VNA