Mobile phone production at Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd. Phones and parts topthe list of hard currency earners in the first half of 2018. (Photo: VNA)

Hanoi (VNA) – As many as 20 products recorded more than 1 billion USD in export turnover in the first half of 2018, accounting for 85.6 percent of Vietnam’s total exports, according to the General Statistics Office (GSO).

Phones and parts topped the list of hard currency earners with exports worth 22.5 billion USD, up 15.4 percent, the GSO said.

It was followed by computers, electronics and accessories (13.5 billion USD, up 15.7 percent), textiles – garment (13.4 billion USD, up 13.8 percent), machinery and components (7.8 billion USD, up 30.6 percent), footwear (7.8 billion USD, 10.6 percent), vehicles and parts (4.1 billion USD, up 20.5 percent) and wood and timber products (4.1 billion USD, up 12.4 percent).

Vietnam enjoyed a trade surplus of 2.71 billion USD in the first six months of 2018 as the country earned 113.93 billion USD from exports, a year-on-year rise of 16 percent while imports hit 111.22 billion USD, up 10 percent. Domestic firms experienced a trade deficit of 12.94 billion USD while the foreign-invested sector, including crude oil exporters, enjoyed a trade surplus of 15.65 billion USD.

Of the total exports, more than 33.1 billion USD came from shipments by domestic enterprises, an annual rise of 19.9 percent, while the remainder came from the foreign invested sector (including crude oil), up 14.5 percent.

According to Tran Thanh Hai, deputy head of the Ministry of Industry and Trade’s Foreign Trade Agency, Vietnam has made good use of tariff preferences in free trade agreements to expand export markets. This was reflected through the country’s export turnover increasing 9.2 percent to the US, 12.3 percent to the EU, 28 percent to China, 31.8 percent to the Republic of Korea and 17.4 percent to ASEAN.

Notably, Vietnam saw impressive export growth in India (96.6 percent), Iraq (27.9 percent), Ukraine (22.4 percent) and Russia (25.4 percent).

Vietnam’s GDP expanded 7.08 percent in January – June, marking the highest rate since 2010, fueled by robust expansion of the industrial and construction sector and service sector, according to GSO General Director Nguyen Bich Lam.

The two biggest contributors to the GDP growth were the industrial and construction sector and the service industry, which rose by 9.07 percent and 6.9 percent, respectively. –VNA