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Trade surplus hits record of US$19.5 billion

Import and export activities in the last months of the year show positive signs and the trade surplus continues to set new records.

Both imports and exports achieve positive growth

According to preliminary data from the General Department of Vietnam Customs, the total import and export value of goods of the whole country in October reached US$51.36 billion, equivalent to the value of September.

Of which, the total export value reached US$27.17 billion, a slight increase of 0.1%, and the total import value reached US$24.19 billion, equal to the value of September.

In the first 10 months of 2020, Vietnam’s total import and export value of goods reached $439.82 billion, a slight increase of 2.6% year-on-year.

The total export turnover was estimated at US$229.65 billion, up 4.9%, and the total import value was estimated at US$210.17 billion, up 0.3%.

Notably, after months of negative growth, by the end of October, Vietnam’s merchandise import activities saw positive growth.

The merchandise trade balance in October had a surplus of US$2.98 billion. By the end of October, Vietnam had a trade surplus of US$19.5 billion higher than the surplus of US$9.3 billion of the same period last year.

Regarding major trading partners, the two largest trading partners of Vietnam are the US and China.

Specifically, Vietnam’s exports to the US market in October reached US$7.66 billion, thereby, bringing the total export value of Vietnam in the first 10 months of the year to US$62.36 billion, an increase of 24% year-on-year (or an increase of US$12.1 billion).

Vietnam’s exports to China in October reached US$5.47 billion. By the end of October, export turnover reached US$37.95 billion, a sharp increase of 15% year-on-year.

Commodity groups see fluctuation of “billion dollar”

According to data from the General Department of Vietnam Customs, by the end of October, there were three export commodity groups with an increase in turnover of US$1 billion or more.

Specifically, export turnover of computers, electronic products and components increased by US$7.3 billion; machinery, equipment and spare parts increased by US$6.4 billion; wood and wooden products increased US$1.17 billion.

However, export turnover of some major commodity groups fell in recent months.

Typically, export turnover of textiles declined US$2.58 billion; mobile phones and spare parts fell US$1.8 billion;footwear decreased by US$1.3 billion.

Export turnover of petroleum products decreased by US$940 million; camera, camcorder and spare partsdeclined US$766 million.

Import turnover of computers, electronic products and accessories increased by US$8.6 billion year-on-year.

Also, import turnover of many commodity groups sharply declined compared to the same period last year.

Notably, import turnover of the raw and auxiliary materials for the textile and garment and footwear industries fell US$2.7 billion. Followed by petroleum products, down US$2.24 billion; iron and steel of all kinds decreased by US$1.4 billion; CBU cars and auto spare parts decreased by US$1.35 billion.

If Vietnam continues to maintain a turnover of over US$50 billion/month in the last two months of the year as in September and October, we will end 2020 with an export turnover of approximately US$540 billion, an increase of more than US$20billion compared to 2019.

Although the growth rate is only 4%, much lower than the rate in recent years, this result is still a remarkable effort in the context of the Covid-19 pandemic, and Vietnam has also suffered from many difficulties due tonatural disasters such as drought, saline intrusion in the Mekong Delta and most recently historic storms and floods in the central region.

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