Vietnam’s banking system had by the end of July registered a credit growth of 3.68 percent compared to the end of 2013 while the total means of payment rose 7.36 percent, according to the State Bank of Vietnam.

Deposits in banks increased 6.98 percent, with dong deposits rising 7.92 percent and deposits in foreign currencies up 1.31 percent, the central bank said in a recent press release.

The central bank continued asking credit organisations to lower their lending interest rates, including for old loans.

Average deposit and lending interest rates in dong were cut by between 0.5 and 1.5 percent a year compared to last year’s end. Banks have moved to lower lending interests for old loans, the central bank said.

Outstanding loans in dong with lending interest rates of over 15 percent and 13 percent had by July 24 accounted for 4.5 percent and 12.9 percent, respectively, of the total amount.

On the foreign exchange market, the VND/USD inter-bank exchange rate was adjusted to increase by 1 percent as of June 19 after remaining intact for a year.

One USD is now equivalent to 21,200-21,250 VND at commercial banks.

In the remaining months of this year, the central bank continues a proactive monetary policy to keep inflation under control and stabilise the macro-economy, while flexibly managing interest and foreign exchange rates in line with macroeconomic developments.

In 2014, Vietnam targets a credit growth 12-14 percent.-VNA