Export turnover in October recorded an increase of 4.5 percent over the previous month, restraining the year-on-year drop in the past ten months at 13.8 percent as compared with 14.3 percent in the first nine months of this year.

According to the General Statistics Office (GSO), the ten-month export turnover reached 46.3 billion USD, including 4.75 billion USD in October alone.

Positive signs of recovery were seen in various items though they are still suffering from the impact of the global economic crisis. For example, electronic and computer accessories fetched up 2.2 billion USD in the past ten months, a year-on-year increase of 0.1 percent; garments and textiles, the country’s key export staple, earned 7.5 billion USD, a drop of only 1.5 percent.

Many other items recorded even higher increases in export turnover over the same period last year, such as pepper, up 49 percent, rice, 32 percent, coffee, 16.8 percent and tea up nearly 23 percent, despite the narrowing of their export markets.

However, the Ministry of Industry and Trade has concluded that the targeted growth rate of 3 percent for this year’s export turnover is out of reach as the slump in prices fetched for exports has been sharply felt and markets have narrowed due to the global economic slowdown.

Export turnover for the whole year is estimated at 56.7 billion USD, a drop of 10 percent from last year.

Meanwhile, imports in the past ten months were on track to increase, resulting in a deficit of almost 8.8 billion USD.

Economic pundits said the trade deficit has increased, particularly in recent months, because producers have been storing up materials for production to anticipate the increase in consumption at the year’s end and the recovery of the world economy.

In a report on socio-economic development in 2009 and the plan for 2010, presented at the on-going sixth session of the 12th National Assembly, the NA’s Economic Committee estimated Vietnam’s export turnover would reach 60 billion USD in 2010, up 6 percent over 2009, thanks to the recovery of the world economy shoring up demand and driving up the prices of many commodities./.