Vietnam rakes in over $30 billion with phone exports

Thanh Nien News

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 A Samsung factory in the northern province of Bac Ninh. Photo: Quang Thuan
Vietnam's exports of mobile phones and parts exceeded US$30 billion last year, surpassing all other products, customs data showed. 
That was a 27.9 percent increase compared to 2014, and accounted for 18.7 percent of the country's total export revenue, it said.
The EU was the biggest buyer of Vietnam's phones and parts, accounting for 33.5 percent. It was followed by the United Arab Emirates and the US.
Computers and other electronic products also saw a strong rise of 36.5 percent, according to the department's figures. They recorded the third highest revenue at $15.61 billion, after garments with $22.81 billion.
The EU was once again the largest buyer of computers and electronics, followed by the US and China. 
Most of the technological shipments came from foreign manufacturers, especially South Korea's LG and Samsung and the US's Microsoft.
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Overall the foreign sector continued to be the largest exporter, shipping $110.59 billion worth of products, up 17.7 percent. 
Local businesses, which accounted for less than 37 percent the total trade volume, saw nearly no changes in their export and import revenues.
South America and Africa became Vietnam's two new export markets with revenues exceeding $1 billion, the customs department reported. They have joined other 27 so-called "major" markets that together buy 90 percent of Vietnamese exports. 
The US remained the biggest buyer with a revenue of $33.48 billion, up 16.9 percent, it said, adding the EU and ASEAN were the second and third biggest markets.
Deputy Trade Minister Tran Quoc Khanh was quoted as saying in news website Dan Tri that with newly inked free trade agreements, Vietnam will have more export markets worth billions of dollars.
Although Vietnam's exports rose 7.9 percent last year, the country saw the first trade deficit since 2012 of about $3.53 billion, due a 12 percent increase in imports.
The customs department said that Vietnam's trade deficit with China was particularly high, estimated at $32.39 billion.

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