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NEW UPDATES Asean Affairs  6 November 2014  

Vietnam may post trade deficit in next year

VIETNAM may post a trade deficit next year after three straight years of surpluses due to weaker growth in exports and higher imports of machinery, the Ministry of Industry and Trade was quoted by local media as saying at a monthly meeting.

The country’s trade deficit is expected to be five per cent of total exports in 2015, the ministry-run Industry and Commerce newspaper said, citing the ministry’s proposal to the National Assembly. (

The government previously projected exports, the country’s main cash earner, to reach around US$163 billion next year, which brings the ministry’s deficit forecast to around US$8 billion, higher than the World Bank’s estimate of US$3.3 billion.

The ministry said exports from multinationals with factories in Vietnam, including South Korea’s Samsung and Microsoft Corp, may slow in 2015, while the domestic sector remains in deficit.

Imports are likely to jump as foreign firms shift machines and equipment for investment in Vietnam should major trade deals conclude, while the government’s aim to avoid dependence on a single market may lead to higher imported prices.

Vietnam is negotiating several trade deals, including the Trans-Pacific Trade pact, and a free trade agreement with the European Union.

The country expects a trade surplus of US$1.5 billion for 2014, which would be the third in a row after two decades of deficit, with mobile phones and textiles continuing to bolster an economy constrained in the past few years by high levels of bad debt and weak consumer spending.

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This year in Thailand-what next?

AseanAffairs   04 January 2011
By David Swartzentruber      

It is commonplace in journalism to write two types of articles at the transition point between the year that has passed and the New Year. As this writer qualifies as an “old hand” in observing Thailand with a track record dating back 14 years, it is time take a shot at what may unfold in Thailand in 2011.

The first issue that can’t be answered is the health of Thailand’s beloved King Bhumibol, who is now 83 years old. He is the world's longest reigning monarch, but elaborate birthday celebrations in December failed to mask concern over his health. More






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