Vietnam continued to see its trade deficit widen for the third consecutive month in May, reflecting the recovery of domestic production.

According to the General Statistics Office (GSO), the trade deficit widened to more than 1.9 billion USD in the first five months of this year, growing by 722 million USD during a four-month period.

Le Thi Minh Thuy, director of the GSO's Trade Department, said the trade deficit has widened due to increasing imports of raw materials for domestic manufacturing sectors.

This month, import turnover reached 12 billion USD, a rise of 9.4 percent over last month, while exports reached 10.8 billion USD, increasing by 7.6 percent.

Import turnover during the first five months totalled 51.861 billion USD, 16.8 percent higher than the same period last year. More than 55 percent of import turnover came from the foreign direct investment (FDI) sector, which saw an increase of 25.4 percent over the same period last year.

The domestic sector experienced growth in import turnover of only 7.6 percent.

The country earned 49.938 billion USD from exports during the first five months, a rise of 15.1 percent over the same period last year.

The FDI sector continued to experience a trade surplus of about 4 billion USD in the five months and 520 million USD in May alone.

The domestic sector's export turnover increased by only 2.1 percent, reaching 17.119 billion USD. Major imports included products such as chemicals, plastics, fabric, iron and steel while mobile phones and components, electronics and computers, garment and textile products, crude oil and fruits were key export products.

However, several major agricultural exports saw declining turnover, such as seafood products (with turnover of 2.277 billion USD, down 2.5 percent), coffee (1.5 billion USD, down 20 percent) and rice (1.3 billion USD, down 5.3 percent).-VNA