Vietnam runs nearly 28 bln USD in trade deficit with China hinh anh 1Vietnam’s trade deficit with China is widening (Illustrative photo: VietnamPlus)

Hanoi (VNA) – Vietnam’s trade deficit with China is widening, exceeding 27 billion USD in the first nine months of 2019.

According to the Ministry of Industry and Trade, total trade revenue over the last nine months is estimated at 382.72 billion USD. That includes 194.3 billion USD in exports and 188.42 billion USD in imports, up 8.2 percent and 8.9 percent year on year, respectively.

Shipments to some markets posted high growth rates such as Japan 10 percent, the Republic of Korea 8.1 percent, ASEAN 4.7 percent, and Russia 13.9 percent.

In particular, trade with China reached about 83.25 billion USD by the end of the third quarter. However, Vietnam’s deficit with this market is widening.

During the reviewed period, exports to China declined 3.8 percent from the same period last year to some 27.75 billion USD. Meanwhile, Vietnam spent around 55.5 billion USD on importing goods from the neighbouring country, rising by 17.3 percent.

As a result, Vietnam ran a trade deficit of about 27.75 billion USD with China in the nine months, a surge from more than 25 billion USD between January and August.

[Vietnam gains 194.3 billion USD in export revenue in nine months]

The most imported commodities were machinery, equipment, tools and spare parts; computers, electronic products and components; and mobile phones and components. Meanwhile, the country’s main exports to China were computers, electronic products and components, mobile phones and components, along with agricultural products.

The ministry’s statistics also show that of the 194.3 billion USD in the nine-month export turnover, 30.7 percent was contributed by the domestic sector, and 69.3 percent by the foreign invested one.

The United States continued to be the largest importer as it splashed out 44.9 billion USD on purchasing Vietnamese goods, followed by the European Union (31.1 billion USD), ASEAN (19.4 billion USD), Japan (15.1 billion USD), and the Republic of Korea (14.5 billion USD).

During the period, 26 products achieved an export turnover of more than 1 billion USD, with five of them posting more than 10 billion USD in export value.

To be more specific, shipments of mobile phones and spare parts fetched 38.6 billion USD; electronic products, computers and spare parts 25.4 billion USD; garments and textiles 24.8 billion USD; footwear 13.3 billion USD; and machines, equipment and spare parts 12.9 billion USD. They all recorded a good growth of 5.1 percent, 16.9 percent, 10.4 percent, 13.5 percent and 7.5 percent, respectively.

On stark contrast, exports of agro-fishery products experienced a substantial drop, with the sharpest falls seen in shipments of coffee (20.7 percent) and rice (9.7 percent).

Experts said that shipments of agricultural products and seafood depended much on the Chinese market, and once the Chinese Government tightened import standards, Vietnamese exporters would find it hard to bring their products to this market. Meanwhile, local firms maintained export advantage in the United States, the European Union, the Republic of Korea and Japan, with most of the exports being electronic products, garments-textiles, and footwear.

Also in the January – September period, Vietnam recorded a gross domestic product (GDP) expansion of 6.98 percent, the highest nine-month growth rate over the past nine years, according to the General Statistics Office (GSO).

The third-quarter GDP grew by 7.31 percent year on year, higher than 6.82 percent in the first quarter and 6.73 percent in the second quarter.

In the first nine months, industry – construction rose by 9.63 percent and services by 6.85 percent, contributing 52.6 percent and 42.6 percent to the GDP, respectively.

Agriculture, forestry and fishery expanded just 2.02 percent and contributed 4.8 percent to the GDP as the sector has been struggling to cope with impacts of climate change and African swine fever while major foreign buyers have set stricter import rules.

Agriculture has yet to rebound, inching up 0.74 percent from the same period last year, lower than that of 2017 and 2018. Fishery was the sector’s best performer which increased 6.12 percent while forestry grew by 3.98 percent.

The GSO said manufacturing and processing remained the main engine driving the industry sector as well as the entire economy, growing at 11.37 percent.

In the services industry, wholesale and retail posted the highest growth at 8.31 percent, followed by finance, banking and insurance segment (8.19 percent), transportation and logistics (7.82 percent), and information and communications (7.65 percent)./.