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NEWS UPDATES Asean Affairs        25  June 2011

Vietnamese garment exports to reach $13.2b this year

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Total garment export turnover is estimated to reach US$6.16 billion in the first half of this year, up 30 percent against the same period last year, the highest growth rate in the past five years, said deputy general director of the Vietnam National Garment and Textile Group (Vinatex) Le Tien Truong at a press conference yesterday in Hanoi.

In June alone, apparel exports topped $1.15 billion, a month-on-month increase of 11 percent, Truong said.

These encouraging results came despite the fact that domestic garment enterprises had to cope with several challenges including rising electricity prices that resulted in increased production costs, high lending interest rates and fluctuations in the global price of cotton, he said, adding that the US, EU and Japan remained the largest importers of Vietnamese garments.

During the period, the apparel industry also witnessed an export surplus of $2.1 billion, making an effective contribution to the country's economic development, he said.

"At this rate, our target of exporting $13.2 billion worth of garments this year is well within our reach," he noted.

As part of a garment and textile development plan for the 2011-20 period, the industry will gain yearly growth of 12-14 percent and export growth of 15 percent.

The apparel industry is targeted to reach $18 billion in export value by 2015 and $25 billion by 2020, creating 2.75 million and 3 million jobs, respectively.

The plan also outlined a number of provinces with high potential for the establishment of garment production factories as well as for the launch of textile and garment industrial clusters.

They were Phu Tho,Tuyen Quang, Thai Nguyen in the northern-mountainous region; Thanh Hoa, Nghe An, Quang Tri in the north-central region; Thua Thien Hue, Quang Nam, Phu Yen, Binh Dinh in the central-coastal region and Tien Giang, Dong Thap and Tay Ninh in the Mekong Delta and southern regions.

Meanwhile, there are plans to produce raw materials in eight other provinces including the central highland provinces of Dak Lak, Dak Nong and central Ninh Thuan Province as well as the northern mountainous province of Son La.


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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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