Vietnam's industrial production is on the mend, with growth recorded in the manufacturing and processing sectors.

Huynh Tat Thang, deputy head of the Ministry of Industry and Trade's Planning Department made the positive assessment at a Hanoi conference on September 3 reviewing the sectors' activities in the first eight months of the year.

The ministry's figures showed that industrial production last month rose 4.4 percent over July. The Index of Industrial Production (IIP) in the eight-month period increased 5.3 percent year-on-year.

The beverage production, natural gas exploitation, paper and chemical production sectors saw a high growth rate.

Thang stated that the inventory index of processing and manufacturing sectors rose 9 percent against the corresponding period last year.

The milk production inventory rose 25.7 percent while that of automobiles and motorbikes rose 81.6 percent.

However, he added that some industries are still facing difficulties, including steel, fertiliser and chemicals despite industrial production recovery. Nguyen Tien Nghi, vice chairman of the Viet Nam Steel Association said his sector had coped with high inventories because of decreasing consumption.

The ministry also reported that exports last month hit 11.5 billion USD, bringing the total export revenues in the first eight months of the year to 84.82 billion USD, a 14.7 percent rise over the same period last year.

It said import turnover last month rose 5.2 percent to 11.8 billion USD. Total import turnover in the period reached 85.4 billion USD, increasing 14.9 percent over the corresponding period last year. Á a result, the country saw 577 million USD of trade deficit in the period. Participants said export turnovers in the period were lower due to decreasing prices of key export items.

Pham Van Bay, vice chairman of the Vietnam Food and Foodstuff Association, said decreasing price on the world rice market negatively affected Vietnam .

He said 521,000 tonnes of rice were exported last month and the average price decreased 15 percent.

The ministry said it would focus on attracting investment into supporting industries and simplify administrative procedures on certificates of origin and market expansion to meet the export turnover target of 128 billion USD this year.-VNA