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ADB Country Director: Vietnam capable of achieving dual goals

Rosy Huong Rosy Huong

huongthhd@gmail.com

June 12, 2021 | 10:04

Vietnam has sufficient conditions to achieve the twin targets of curbing the Covid-19 pandemic and securing economic growth in 2021.

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ADB Country Director: Vietnam capable of achieving dual goals
In the first five months of 2021, the Vietnamese economy continued to post encouraging signs in export, foreign investment attraction, FDI disbursement, and retail sales. Photo: VNA

Vietnam has sufficient conditions to achieve the twin targets of curbing the Covid-19 pandemic and securing economic growth in 2021, according to Country Director of the Asian Development Bank (ADB) Andrew Jeffries.

Talking about the recovery capability of Vietnam’s economy amid the fourth wave of Covid-19 infections, he expressed his optimism about the country’s economic outlook, given the positive economic statistics recorded in April and May, Nhan dan (People) newspaper reported on June 11.

In the first five months of 2021, the Vietnamese economy continued to post encouraging signs in export, foreign investment attraction, FDI disbursement, and retail sales.

However, Jeffries also pointed out that risks have appeared when the pandemic resurged in April while the implementation of the Covid-19 vaccination plan has been delayed.

He noted that the ongoing fourth wave of infections has affected not only big cities like Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City but also industrial parks in Bac Giang and Bac Ninh provinces, which are the locations of manufacturing activities by many important links in the electronics supply chain.

ADB Country Director for Vietnam Andrew Jeffries (Photo: VNA)
ADB Country Director for Vietnam Andrew Jeffries. Photo: VNA

To realise the target of becoming an upper-middle-income country by 2030, Vietnam needs to sustain an annual economic growth rate of over 7%, the ADB official remarked.

The first and foremost condition to obtain such growth is that the private sector in the industry and services sectors must operate dynamically, he said, calling for conditions to be created for them to access financial, land, and technological sources and enhance corporate governance skills.

It is also necessary to rationalise business procedures for private firms and prioritise digital transformation, according to him.

Jeffries noted that Vietnam’s economic growth and development outlook is closely associated with the capability to curb the spread of the coronavirus.

The successful containment of the pandemic is the decisive factor in the 2021 growth, he went on, expressing his belief that the Vietnamese Government and people will be able to control the pandemic thanks to the important experiences gained from the previous outbreaks.

Vietnam to see export growth as global demand recovers. (Photo chinhphu.vn)
Vietnam to see export growth as global demand recovers. Photo chinhphu.vn

During the interview, the ADB Country Director said the current wave of Covid-19 infections with new variants has been handled effectively by the Government and now almost under control. Therefore, Vietnam is completely capable of realising the twin targets of curbing the pandemic and gaining economic growth this year.

However, he also warned that unexpected outbreaks could continue to happen and impact part of the workforce, especially in industrial parks.

The only way to help push back the pandemic, ensure long-term safety for people, and create conditions for economic development is to step up Covid-19 vaccination, he added.

Earlier, Standard Chartered announced its forecast that Vietnam’s GDP growth would be 6.7% this year and 7.3% in 2022, the Vietnam News Agency (VNA) said.

Tim Leelahaphan, the bank’s economist for Vietnam and Thailand, held that Vietnam’s economy remains strong and the country is proving to be one of the world’s best performing economies amid the Covid-19 pandemic.

Export turnover grows 30.7% in five months

A medium density fibreboard (MDF) production line of Thanh Thành Đạt MDF Joint Stock Company in the central province of Hà Tĩnh. The country exported $9.69 billion worth of agricultural and forestry products in the first five months of 2021, up 13.5 per cent. — VNA/VNS Photo Vũ Sinh
A medium density fibreboard (MDF) production line of Thanh Thanh Dat MDF Joint Stock Company in the central province of Ha Tinh. Photo: VNA

Vietnam shipped US$ 130.94 billion worth of goods overseas in the first five months of 2021, up 30.7% annually, according to the General Statistics Office.

The domestic sector contributed $33.06 billion and the FDI sector (including crude oil) US$ 97.88 billion, increasing 16.6 and 36.3% year on year, respectively.

During the period, 22 products recorded an export value of over US$ 1 billion each and together they accounted for 87.3% of the nation’s total export.

The export of the group of heavy industrial goods and minerals reeled in about US$ 70.7 billion, up 33% from the same period last year. It was followed by the groups of light industrial goods and handicrafts at US$ 47.32 billion (up 33%) and of agricultural and forestry products at US$ 9.69 billion (up 13.5%). The group of aquatic products posted 3.24 billion in export revenue, an annual increase of 12%.

The United States remained the biggest export market of Vietnam, spending US$ 37.6 billion on imports, a year-on-year rise of 49.8%. China came second with US$ 20.1 billion, up 26%. The EU and ASEAN followed with US$ 16.1 billion and US$ 11.5 billion, increasing by 20.8% and 23.7%.

In May alone, Vietnam’s exports valued at US$ 26 billion, down 2.1% over the previous month and up 35.6% from the same period last year.

Meanwhile, the country’s import in the five-month period hit $131.31 billion, an annual growth of 36.4%, with China named Vietnam’s biggest import market./.

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Rosy Huong