Exports 2019: Overcoming hardships, collecting achievements

VCN - 2019 will be the fourth consecutive year that Vietnam has a trade surplus of about US$9 billion. In the context of difficulties – the globaleconomy grows slowly, global trade decelerates, exports of countries in the region have decreased compared to the same period last year, Vietnam's export results in 2019 are really impressive.
tin nhap 20200103180923 Exports 2019: Continuous difficulties, unspecified destinations
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Impressive numbers

In 2019, it is the first time Vietnam's total import and export turnover has reached US$500 billion.

It is expected that the export growth rate of whole yearwill reach 7-8% with an export surplus of about US$9 billion. It can be seen that throughout the year, Vietnam's export volume of goodscontinues to expand.By the end of November 2019, there were 32 items with export turnover of over US$1 billion(of which 8 items exported over US$5 billion and 5 items exported over US$10 billion).

In commodity exports in 2019, a difference from previous years is that the driving force for export growth comes not from agricultural products,but from industrial goods.

The structure of export goods continued to improve in a positive direction,reducing the content of raw exports, increasing exports of processed products and industrial products, enabling Vietnamese goods to participatedeeply in the global production and supply chain.

Looking at Vietnam's export "picture" for the past decade in general and 2019 in particular, economist Le Quoc Phuong assessed that imports and exports werean important part of Vietnam's economy.

In 2010, Vietnam had just achieved an import-export turnover of US$154 billion,but this year, that number has more than tripled to US$500 billion.Particularly, exports in2010 reached US$71 billion, but it is expected to reach about US$255 billionthis year.

Vietnam has made great progress in import and exportthrough impressive figures.

In 2019 the export growth rate,which is expected to reach about 7-8%, is still far behind the growth of 2017 and 2018, respectively reaching 21.5% and over 14%, only equivalent to growth rates of 2015 and 2016.

However, expert Le Quoc Phuong said: “It must be seen that 2017 and 2018 are two years of high economic and trade growth in the world.Specifically, in 2017, the world economy grew by 3.7% and world trade grew by 5.5%. In 2018, the world economy and world trade both grew by 3.6%. Meanwhile, in 2019, world economic growth is forecasted to reach only 3%,world trade will grow by only 1.1%.Both economic and world trade plummeted. In this context, Vietnam still maintains the export growth rate of 7-8% which is a great effort.”

Brilliant for domestic enterprises

In 2018 and throughout 2019, in Vietnam'sexportsof goods, the most visible bright spot is the strong rise of domestic enterprises. The growth rate as well as the proportion of this group of enterprises in exporting goods is one of the factors that prolong the list of impressive figures of 2019.

Deputy Minister of Industry and Trade Do ThangHai stated that in the first 11 months of 2019, the export turnover of enterprises with 100% domestic capital was estimated at US$74.72 billion,up 18.1%; the FDI sector (including crude oil) was estimated at US$166.7 billion, up 3.8%.The share of the domestic economic sector continued anupward trend, accounting for 30.95% of total export turnover (the same period last year was 29.16%).

The Deputy Minister said that in2019, the world economic situation became complicated, trade and investment activities in the world declined,importing countries increasingly tightened non-tariff barriers and increased domestic protection.

This has a direct impact on the export of countries around the world, including Vietnam, especially when Vietnam was an economy with very large openness and exports were an important pillar contributing to growth.Maintaining positive export growthand record trade surplus of Vietnamshowedthe effectiveness in directing, operating and exploiting, taking the opportunityto boost exports.

“Notably, enterprises have been very proactive in implementing innovative measures on trade promotion. For example,the application of e-commerce, in 2019 the Ministry of Industry and Trade has supported Vietnamese enterprises to reach more than 50% of enterprises registeredto sell in the US marketsuccessfully.Emphatically, the results achieved in Vietnam's export activities are firstly from the initiative and efforts of Vietnamese enterprises themselves.Enterprises have improved their own competitiveness to produce andmake products to be able to compete in markets. This is a very important thing,” Deputy Minister Do ThangHai said.

There are also worries

In 2019, Vietnam's import and export of goods has recorded an impressive number, but in fact, the Vietnamese economy in general as well as Vietnam's import and export activities in particular are still based on the main quantity. The achieved figures are an immediate vision for sustainable development, problems need to be considered and solved.

Economic expert Pham Tat Thang said that in the future, the trend of market protection of major countries would remain. Subjectively, some products with high added value would be not much and a lack of world-class goods brand. Import and export barriers have been improved, but still need more improvement in the future.

“In addition, the US-China trade war is still unknown its changes, which is very unpredictable. This will affect the supply-demand of the world market. When Vietnam gets more involved with the global game, it will beaffected,”said Mr. Pham Tat Thang.

Deputy Minister Do ThangHai affirmed that in the future, the Ministry of Industry and Trade would continue to create the most favorable conditions on production and import-export procedures to support enterprises to complete production orders as planned;continue to closely monitor fluctuations of the world situation, especially the development of the US-China trade war in order to be proactive in its administration and take measures to promote the export of goods which could take advantage of opportunitiesto export and strengthen strict management against the risk of commercial fraud and goods origin fraud.

In addition, the Ministry of Industry and Trade also should focuson creating quality sources for production, aiming to increase added value, produce productsthat meet quality standards, food safety and be suitable for the needs of the import market.

In 2019, all groupsof market that Vietnam has signed and are implementing Free Trade Agreements (FTA) are recording good growth. For example, exports to Japan in the first 11 months of 2019 increased by 7.6%; exports to South Korea increased by 10.1%; exports to ASEAN increased by 2.5%.

Especially, export turnover to markets that are members of the Trans-Pacific Strategic Partnership Agreement (CPTPP) reached a good increase, showing the first step to take advantage ofcommitments of this agreement efficiently to promote export and diversify export markets. Specifically, exports to Canada in 11 months of 2019 reached US$3.5 billion, up 27.2%; exports to Mexico reached US$2.7 billion, up 29.5%.

By Thanh Nguyen/Binh Minh

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