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Vietnam: Economy

Economy Vietnam
Economy - overview:
Vietnam is a poor, densely-populated country that has had to recover from the ravages of war, the loss of financial support from the old Soviet Bloc, and the rigidities of a centrally planned economy. Substantial progress was achieved from 1986 to 1996 in moving forward from an extremely low starting point - growth averaged around 9% per year from 1993 to 1997. The 1997 Asian financial crisis highlighted the problems in the Vietnamese economy but, rather than prompting reform, reaffirmed the government's belief that shifting to a market-oriented economy would lead to disaster. GDP growth of 8.5% in 1997 fell to 6% in 1998 and 5% in 1999. Growth then rose to 6% to 7% in 2000-02 even against the background of global recession. These numbers mask some major difficulties in economic performance. Many domestic industries, including coal, cement, steel, and paper, have reported large stockpiles of inventory and tough competition from more efficient foreign producers. Meanwhile, Vietnamese authorities have moved to implement the structural reforms needed to modernize the economy and to produce more competitive, export-driven industries. The US-Vietnam Bilateral Trade Agreement entered into force near the end of 2001 and is expected to significantly increase Vietnam's exports to the US. The US is assisting Vietnam with implementing the legal and structural reforms called for in the agreement.
GDP:
purchasing power parity - $183.8 billion (2002 est.)
GDP - real growth rate:
7% (2002 est.)
GDP - per capita:
purchasing power parity - $2,300 (2002 est.)
GDP - composition by sector:
agriculture: 24%
industry: 37%
services: 39% (2001 est.)
Population below poverty line:
37% (1998 est.)
Household income or consumption by percentage share:
lowest 10%: 3.6%
highest 10%: 29.9% (1998)
Distribution of family income - Gini index:
36.1 (1998)
Inflation rate (consumer prices):
3.9% (2002 est.)
Labor force:
38.2 million (1998 est.)
Labor force - by occupation:
agriculture 63%, industry and services 37% (2000 est.)
Unemployment rate:
25% (1995 est.)
Budget:
revenues: $5.3 billion
expenditures: $5.6 billion, including capital expenditures of $1.8 billion (1999 est.)
Industries:
food processing, garments, shoes, machine-building, mining, cement, chemical fertilizer, glass, tires, oil, coal, steel, paper
Industrial production growth rate:
10.2% (2002 est.)
Electricity - production:
29.8 billion kWh (2001)
Electricity - production by source:
fossil fuel: 43.7%
hydro: 56.3%
other: 0% (2001)
nuclear: 0%
Electricity - consumption:
27.71 billion kWh (2001)
Electricity - exports:
0 kWh (2001)
Electricity - imports:
0 kWh (2001)
Oil - production:
356,700 bbl/day (2001 est.)
Oil - consumption:
185,000 bbl/day (2001 est.)
Oil - exports:
NA (2001)
Oil - imports:
NA (2001)
Oil - proved reserves:
1.4 billion bbl (37257)
Natural gas - production:
1.3 billion cu m (2001 est.)
Natural gas - consumption:
1.3 billion cu m (2001 est.)
Natural gas - exports:
0 cu m (2001 est.)
Natural gas - imports:
0 cu m (2001 est.)
Natural gas - proved reserves:
192.6 billion cu m (37257)
Agriculture - products:
paddy rice, corn, potatoes, rubber, soybeans, coffee, tea, bananas, sugar; poultry, pigs; fish
Exports:
$16.5 billion f.o.b. (2002 est.)
Exports - commodities:
crude oil, marine products, rice, coffee, rubber, tea, garments, shoes
Exports - partners:
US 15.2%, Japan 14.9%, Australia 7.6%, China 6.6%, Germany 6.5%, Singapore 5.5%, UK 4.3% (2002)
Imports:
$16.8 billion f.o.b. (2002 est.)
Imports - commodities:
machinery and equipment, petroleum products, fertilizer, steel products, raw cotton, grain, cement, motorcycles
Imports - partners:
South Korea 12.7%, China 12.2%, Japan 12.1%, Singapore 11.8%, Taiwan 10.6%, Thailand 5.4% (2002)
Debt - external:
$14.1 billion (2001)
Economic aid - recipient:
$2.1 billion in credits and grants pledged by international donors for 2000
Currency:
dong (VND)
Currency code:
VND
Exchange rates:
dong per US dollar - 15,325.8 (2002), 14,725.2 (2001), 14,167.7 (2000), 13,943.2 (1999), 13,268 (1998)
Fiscal year:
calendar year

Also See:

Background & Country Profile
Geography
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Government
Economy
Communications
Transportation
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Transnational Issues & International Disputes
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Source: The CIA World Fact Book 2003

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