Containers being loaded at a port in Ho Chi Minh City. Photo by Reuters / Kham.
Vietnam recorded a trade deficit of $ 369 million in the first five months of 2021 as both exports and imports increased.
Imports rose 36.4 percent year-on-year to $ 131.3 billion, 65 percent of which was from foreign companies, according to Vietnam’s General Statistics Office.
Manufacturing inputs and equipment accounted for almost 94 percent of total imports, and consumer goods for the remainder.
Vietnam imported $ 43.3 billion in goods from China, up 53%, with the other major sources being South Korea, ASEAN, Japan, the EU and the United States.
Exports rose 31% to $ 130 billion, with foreign companies accounting for three quarters.
Exports of heavy industrial products and minerals accounted for $ 70.7 billion, up 33%. Light industry products and handicrafts grew at the same rate to reach $ 47 billion.
Exports of agricultural and forestry products rose 13.5 percent to $ 9.69 billion. Seafood exports rose 12 percent to $ 3.24 billion.
The United States was the main market, accounting for 29%, with China, the EU, ASEAN and South Korea being the other main buyers.
In 2020, exports had increased 6.5% to $ 281.5 billion and imports 3.6% to $ 262.4 billion.