Signs of economic recovery have become clearer as industrial production especially processing and manufacturing continued to grow, the Vietnam Economic News reported on June 13.

According to the Ministry of Industry and Trade, the index of industrial production (IIP) in May 2014 rose two percent compared to April 2014 and 5.9 percent compared to the same period in 2013.

Of this, the mining industry decreased 0.8 percent, the processing and manufacturing industry was up 7.5 percent, electricity production and distribution increased 10.4 percent, and water supply and wastewater treatment soared 7.2 percent compared to the same period last year.

The IIP in the first five months of this year increased 5.6 percent, which is higher than that in the same period last year, of which the processing and manufacturing industry increased 7.5 percent, higher than the industrial sector’s average.

Retail sales and service revenues in May totaled an estimated at 240.27 trillion VND, up 1.38 percent from April, taking the total in the first five months of this year to an estimated 1.179 trillion VND, up 11.01 percent or 5.99 percent (excluding the price factor) from the same period last year.

The economy’s recovery was reflected through the high growth of the processing and manufacturing industry. Fisheries, yarn, footwear and electronic component industries grew 10-30 percent. These industries played an important role in export development. Although exports in May decreased 8.2 percent compared to April to reach an estimated 12 billion USD they were 3.5 percent higher than May 2013.

Promoting new markets and taking the initiative in sourcing raw materials is something that many production industries are doing to increase sales and exports and decrease inventories.

The processing and manufacturing industry’s inventory index on May 1 increased two percent over April 1 and 12.6 percent over the same time last year, while that on April 1 was 6.2 percent higher than March 1.

Businesses have taken the initiative in sourcing materials to take opportunities to be provided by the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPP). Many leading yarn producers in the country have had plans to expand production and investment and improve their material supply capacity to gradually decrease imports.

To avoid heavy dependence on the Chinese market, the Vietnam Textile and Apparel Association (VITAS) encouraged businesses in the textile and garment sector to take the initiative in new, potential markets to import materials. The association said that they could import fiber from Thailand, the Republic of Korea (RoK) and Indonesia, yarn from Thailand, Indonesia and India and cloth from the RoK, Thailand and Malaysia.-VNA