Ho Chi Minh City made robust economic growth in the first eight months, creating favourable conditions to fulfill its socio-economic targets for the whole year, a senior municipal official has said.

Chairman Le Hoang Quan of the Ho Chi Minh City People’s Committee was speaking on August 26 at the committee’s meeting which provided economic figures for the period.

The municipal Department of Planning and Investment reported that exports totaled 18.56 billion USD, an increase of 2.3 percent following August shipments of 2.24 billion USD.

Imports jumped 10.8 percent in August though, at 15.6 billion USD, the value for the year-to-date fell 9.1 percent.

Major decreases were reported in steel, milk and dairy products, computers, and electronics and components.

The Industrial Production Index has been rising consistently this year with some major sectors like mechanical engineering, electronics, chemicals-rubber-plastics, and food processing reporting a 7.5 percent increase year-on-year.

The city plans to restructure these industries by focusing on processing and manufacturing and reducing the contribution of mining.

So far this year, city authorities have issued licences to 241 projects with a total investment of 1.06 billion USD, a 7.3 percent decrease in number but an 80.3 percent jumping in value.

Chairman Quan lauded the figures, saying they indicated the great efforts made by the authorities and people.

He, however, pointed out that links between the banking system and businesses, especially those taking part in the city’s price stabilization programme, must be strengthened.

Credit growth in the city remained low, at about 4.7 percent against the target of 10-15 percent, he said.
As of August 20, the city has issued licences to 15,071 new businesses, but 14,200 existing ones suspended operations.

In the rest of the year, city authorities are expected to introduce more new policies and incentives to help businesses and improve the competitiveness of the city’s industries.-VNA