Vietnam ’s economy will see positive developments in the second half of the year as the government’s loosened monetary policies and stimulus packages become effective, said a senior economic expert.

According to Dr. Le Dinh An, Director of the National Centre for Socio-economic Information and Forecast (NCSIF) under the Ministry of Planning and Investment, Vietnam’s exports are expected to increase in the rest of the year when world prices, especially prices of export staples, are predicted to rise again, along with increasing export demand as a result of trade promotion and outlet expansion to China and Africa.

The global trade may recover sooner than expected, he said, adding that big economies have joined hands to put forth anti-crisis measures and taken the advantage of the crisis for effective restructuring.

The NCSIF forecasts that this year, the industrial sector’s growth rate will reach between 4.6 percent and 5.2 percent while the agricultural and service sectors will grow at 3.4-3.7 percent and 4.9-5.8 percent, respectively.

The country’s consumer price index (CPI) in 2009 is estimated to stand at 7.51 percent, according to the centre.

An also said that prices may rise again during the last months of 2009 due to increasing crude oil prices which now stand at nearly 70 USD per barrel.

In addition, a huge sum of money has been poured into the market to implement the government’s stimulus packages and social security policies while domestic production is yet to recover. This may lead to a money-commodity imbalance, a reason for price hikes, he said.

The NCSIF director also predicted a higher domestic consumption and inflation rate for the year-end unless due attention is paid to price control measures./.