The Hanoitimes - Vietnam’s export value to India in the first three months of this year jumped by up to 111 percent year-on-year to nearly US$1.57 billion, data from the General Department of Customs showed.
Thanks to the impressive surge, Vietnam had a trade surplus of $532.6 million with India in the period, the record high to date.
In March alone, exports of the southeast Asian nation to India reached $637.63 million, rising 120 percent against March 2017 and 32.5 percent against the previous month.
In the first quarter, Vietnam’s import value from India inched up 2.4 percent to $1.04 billion. However, the import turnover in March alone surged sharply by 45.7 percent compared with February to $369.88 million.
Exports of machinery, equipment and tools to India surged by 476.2 percent
Some items with strong export turnover were machinery, equipment, tools and accessories (476.2 percent); means of transport and spare parts (360.2 percent); steel products (342.2 percent); coal (320.8 percent); rattan, bamboo and rushes (940.7).
Exports of mobile phones and components also retained a good growth momentum with export value in the first quarter reaching $200.17 million, an increase of 99.7 percent.
Vietnam’s pepper export turnover to India also posted a year-on-year whopping surge of 209 percent in volume to more than 7,100 tons in the first quarter of this year. However, the export value to the market reached $25.06 million, surging only 77 percent against the same period last year, as the product’s export price dropped sharply by 42.8 percent to $3,514 per ton.
As for imports from India, some key staples were ore and other minerals (up 187.9 percent); plastic materials (up 153.8 percent; automobile parts (up 146.7 percent) and paper types (106.6 percent).
Vietnam and India hope to increase bilateral trade to $15 billion by 2020, according to a joint statement issued by the two sides during President Tran Dai Quang’s visit to India in March.
President Quang and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi agreed on the need to adopt targeted measures to achieve $15 billion in bilateral trade, focusing on diversifying export products, reducing trade barriers and enhancing air and maritime transport connectivity.
The two sides agreed to hold the next session of the Joint Sub-Committee on Trade at the earliest opportunity in 2018.
Cooperation agreements, including a memorandum of understanding (MoU) on economic and trade cooperation between the Vietnamese Ministry of Industry and Trade and the Indian Ministry of Commerce and Industry, and an action plan on agricultural cooperation in the 2018-2020 period between the two countries were signed to promote the ties.
According to the Indian Embassy in Hanoi, economic and trade relations between the two countries have expanded, with bilateral trade growing tenfold over the past decade. Economic cooperation has increased rapidly, especially since the two countries established a strategic partnership in 2007 and upgraded it to a comprehensive strategic partnership in 2016. Data from the Indian side show that bilateral trade exceeded $10 billion in the 2016-2017 fiscal year and both sides are determined to raise it to $15 billion by 2020. Currently, Vietnam is India’s fourth largest trading partner in ASEAN, and India ranks 10th among Vietnam’s trading partners.
India currently also ranks 28th among 126 countries and territories investing in Vietnam, with 168 projects with total registered capital of US$756 million. Major Indian groups, such as TATA, ONGC and Essar, have successfully invested in Vietnam. Vietnam hopes to attract more Indian investment in renewable energy, manufacturing industry, information technology and infrastructure construction - fields where India has advantages and Vietnam has demand. Experts believe the two countries should increase air, land, maritime transport and digital connectivity.