Vietnam posts five-month trade deficit with Israel hinh anh 1Workers produce face masks at a factory of a member company of the Vietnam National Textile and Garment Group - Vinatex (Photo: VNA)

Tel Aviv (VNA) - Vietnam recorded a trade deficit of 101.4 million USD with Israel in the first five months of this year due to declines in the export of key commodities and the resumed import of items of high value.

According to Vietnamese Trade Counsellor in Israel Le Thai Hoa, bilateral trade stood at 649.4 million USD during the five-month period. Vietnam’s exports were down 17.9 percent year-on-year while its imports surged 419.3 percent.

He attributed the import growth primarily to Vietnam resuming its import of commodities from Israel with high value, like computers, electronic products, and components.

Apart from textiles, garments, and coffee products, which saw shipments grow, most of Vietnam’s key exports to Israel were lower year-on-year, including aquatic products, footwear, cashew nuts, and mobile phones.

Such a situation has become common in many countries around the world, Hoa explained, as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Of note, tuna exports to Israel reached 11.09 million USD during the first five months, accounting for 4.6 percent of Vietnam’s total tuna exports, Hoa said, adding that Israel is currently one of the ten largest importers of Vietnamese tuna.

In May alone, bilateral trade stood at 136.15 million USD, excluding machinery, vehicles, equipment, and protective gear in the security and defence sectors. Vietnam’s exports to Israel regained their strong growth while imports rose slightly against the previous month.

He also noted that some Israeli businesses have shown an interest in tra fish fillets, canned food, and apparel from Vietnam, and have been in discussions with Vietnamese partners to boost imports.

Given COVID-19, many Israeli companies have also inked contracts with Vietnamese companies to import medical supplies such as medical gloves and protective gear, Hoa added./.