Vietnam’s Trade Balance Improving with Surplus in September

Vietnam recorded a trade surplus of $0.5 billion in September after five consecutive months of trade deficit, giving a hope for trade balance this year.
October 08, 2021 | 08:16
Vietnam’s Trade Balance Improving with Surplus in September
Vietnam’s export and import turnover in September reached $53.5 billion. Photo: VNA

Statistics of the General Statistics Office (GSO) revealed that Vietnam’s export and import turnover in September reached $53.5 billion, a decrease of 2% from the previous month, but a rise of 4.2% against the same period last year. Of this, export turnover was $27 billion and import, $26.5 billion.

The trade balance has returned to a surplus of $0.5 billion in September. However, due to high trade deficit in the previous months, trade deficit remained at $2.13 billion in the January-September period.

During the nine months, export and import turnover still maintained a high growth rate, reaching $483.17 billion, up 24.4% year on year.

Exports up 18.8% year-on-year

Vietnam’s Trade Balance Improving with Surplus in September
Vietnam shipped $240.52 billion worth of goods abroad in the first nine months of 2021, up 18.8% year-on-year. Photo: diendandoanhnghiep.vn

Vietnam shipped $240.52 billion worth of goods abroad in the first nine months of 2021, up 18.8% year-on-year. The domestic sector contributed $62.72 billion and the FDI sector (including crude oil) $177.8 billion, increasing 8.5% and 22.8% annually, respectively.

Up to 31 products recorded an export value of over $1 billion each and together they accounted for 92.5% of the nation’s total. Of them, six commodities bagged more than $10 billion each.

The group of processed industrial products reeled in $214 billion, a rise of 19.5% from the same period last year.

The US remained the biggest export market of Vietnam, spending $69.8 billion on imports of Vietnamese products, a year-on-year rise of 27.6%. China came second with $38.5 billion, up 18.3%, followed by the EU and ASEAN with $28.8 billion and $20.6 billion, up 11.6% and 21.2%, respectively.

Agricultural sector remains economic pillar

Vietnam shipped $240.52 billion worth of goods abroad in the first nine months of 2021, up 18.8% year-on-year.
Vietnam earned $35.5 billion from the export of agro-forestry-fishery products in the first nine months of this year. Photo: VNA

The agriculture, forestry, and fishery sector play the role of a pedestal of the economy during the pandemic, rice productivity has increased, livestock production has grown steadily, and the export turnover of some agricultural products in nine months of 2021 is quite good compared to the same period last year, the GSO said.

The agricultural sector increased by 3.32%, contributing 0.31 percentage points to the growth rate of the total added value of the whole economy; the forestry sector increased by 3.3%, contributing 0.02 percentage points; the fisheries sector increased by 0.66%, contributing 0.02 percentage points.

Vietnam earned $35.5 billion from the export of agro-forestry-fishery products in the first nine months of this year, a 17.7% increase compared to the same period in 2020, according to the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development.

The ministry reported that farm produce staples accounted for $15.8 billion (14.4%), while main forestry products contributed $11.97 billion and fisheries products, $6.2 billion.

The agricultural sector saw added value in the third quarter increase 1.04% compared to the same period last year, pushing the nine-month growth rate of the sector’s added value to 2.74% and contributed 23.52% to the national economy's overall growth.

Vietnamese cashew nuts increase market share in US

Despite the cashew industry facing stiff competition from the Ivory Coast and Nigeria, Vietnam's cashew nut market share in the United States' total imports rose slightly from 89.08% in the initial seven months last year to 89.26% this year, the VOV cited statistics by to the Ministry of Industry and Trade.

This figure therefore indicates that the Vietnamese cashew industry has successfully retained its leading position as one of the largest suppliers of cashew nuts to the US thanks to its stable supply sources and high quality.

Cashew nut exports during the opening nine months of the year are estimated to have reached 425,000 tonnes worth $2.65 billion, thereby representing a rise of 16.6% in volume and 14.9% in value compared to the same period from last year.

The average export price of cashew nuts throughout the reviewed period dropped by 1.5% on-year to fall to US$6,237 per tonne.

According to statistics compiled by the US International Trade Commission, the US imported approximately 97,620 tonnes of cashew nuts worth US$615.68 million during the seven-month period, marking an increase of 0.5% in volume and a drop of 6.1% in value.

Specifically, the US imported 87,130 tonnes of cashew nuts worth US$545.88 million from the Vietnamese market, up only 0.7% in volume, although representing a drop of 6.4% in value compared to last year’s corresponding period.

The import turnover in the nine-month period reached $242.65 billion, a hike of 30.5% compared to the same period last year. Of which, domestic businesses imported $83.72 billion worth of goods, up 25%, while FDI enterprises made up the majority with $158.93 billion, an increase of 33.6%.

Vietnam would achieve trade balance this year

The Cat Lai Port in HCMC. Photo by VnExpress/Quynh Tran
The Cat Lai Port in HCMC. Photo: VnExpress

Deputy head of the Ministry of Industry and Trade’s Agency of Foreign Trade Tran Thanh Hai told a regular press conference of the ministry in Hanoi that Vietnam could achieve trade balance, or even a trade surplus this year

The current trade deficit is not a cause for concern, considering that trade deficit dropped to $100 million in August after topping $2 billion in July, and September saw the return of trade surplus, he was cited by VietnamPlus as saying.

Vietnam’s exports are in favourable conditions thanks to opportunities from free trade agreements and rising market demand during year’s end, especially for goods of the country’s strength.

Therefore, if there is no major change in the pandemic situation, export activities in southern localities are expected to regain speed in the last quarter of the year, helping balance trade, and even bring a trade surplus, he said./.

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