Vietnam works to avoid trade imbalance

10:28 | 02/04/2020 Trade

(VEN) - The Coronavirus disease (Covid-19) has affected exports, requiring the Ministry of Industry and Trade in coordination with other ministries, departments and associations to seek solutions by diversifying export markets and promoting official exports.

vietnam works to avoid trade imbalance

Slightly increased import-export turnover

Vietnam saw a slight increase in exports and imports in the first two months of the year, both by 2.4 percent, while the trade deficit reached just US$176 million. With the rapid spread of the pandemic to Vietnam’s major export markets, the country has been implementing solutions in order to overcome difficulties, such as exemptions, reduction, extension and deferral of taxes, fees and interest rates for business loans.

In fact, the pandemic has greatly affected a number of Vietnam’s key exports. For example, export turnover of agro-forestry-fishery products dropped by 15.1 percent in February compared to the previous month. In the first two months of the year, eight out of nine items in this commodity group saw a decline in turnover compared to a year ago. Agro-forestry-fishery exports to the Chinese market are forecast to drop by 12-13 percent in the first quarter of 2020 compared to the same period last year.

Some other exports also recorded a decline in the first two months of the year, such as garments and textiles (down by 1.7 percent), all kinds of fiber (down by 16.5 percent), all kinds of iron and steel (down by 33.9 percent), and iron and steel products (down by 7.9 percent).

Removing bottlenecks

With different characteristics, each commodity group requires separate solutions, even long-term strategies to withstand market fluctuations. To prevent the risk of import-export imbalance, the Ministry of Industry and Trade has implemented measures for specific commodity groups.

Regarding the agro-forestry-fishery sector, the Ministry of Industry and Trade has been coordinating with other ministries and departments to update trading methods of agricultural products in order to ensure stable output, and provide support for localities in seeking export markets for agro-forestry-fishery products and processed goods.

In addition to seeking alternative markets for Vietnam’s exports, the Ministry of Industry and Trade has also worked with associations to overcome difficulties and promote trade and production activities, organized field surveys in businesses, and handled problems at border gates to promote trade with China.

In the long term, the Ministry of Industry and Trade is developing a specific plan on trade promotion to strengthen exports of specific commodity groups to achieve the export growth target of 2020. In addition, the ministry is directing overseas Vietnamese trade offices to take the initiative in getting market information and seeking alternative sources of supplies to meet the needs of domestic businesses.

The export growth rate of the domestic sector reached six percent in the first two months of the year, higher than that of 0.9 percent of the foreign-invested sector.

Bui Viet