Viet Nam’s economy and society in the first 6 months of 2018 took place in the context of continued improvement[1] of the world economic growth besides potential risks and challenges. Rising prices of essential goods such as gasoline, iron and steel, fuel, etc. put pressure on inflation in many countries. Global trade maintained growth but faced many difficulties due to trade tension between the US and China and other major partners such as the European Union and Japan. In addition, the trend of increasing trade protectionism of major countries, especially changes in US trade policies, affected the production and export of Viet Nam and other countries in the region.

In the country, besides the advantages from positive results in 2017 and the good development trend in the first quarter, Viet Nam’s economy and society also faced many difficulties and challenges: inflation pressure increased; the number of enterprises suspended business spread sharply; trade was in deficit in the last two months; tariff on some of Vietnam’s main products to the US went up; manufacturing activities tended to slow down; weather changes and fire and traffic accidents were complicated.

In this situation, the Government and the Prime Minister directed ministries, agencies and localities to drastically and effectively implement objectives, tasks and solutions in Resolutions of the Party and the National Assembly, the Government, especially Resolution No. 01/NQ-CP dated 1st January, 2018 on the main tasks and solutions to implement the socio-economic development plan and estimation of the State budget in 2018, regularly monitored, urged and inspected the implementation status in each month, each quarter. As a result, the socio-economic situation continued to be positive. Specific results of sectors, fields in the first 6 months of 2018 were as follows:

      I. ECONOMIC GROWTH

  1. Growth rate of gross domestic product

Gross domestic product (GDP) in the first 6 months of 2018 was estimated to increase 7.08% compared to the same period last year (the first quarter increased by 7.45%; the second quarter rose 6.79%), the highest increase of 6 months from 2011 onwards[2], affirming the timeliness and efficiency of drastic direction of the Government to achieve the economic growth target in 2018. In the growth rate of the whole economy, the agriculture, forestry and fishery sector increased 3.93%, contributing 9.7% to the overall growth rate; the industry and construction sector expanded 9.07%, contributing 48.9%; the service sector spread 6.90%, contributing 41.4%.

The growth rate of the agriculture, forestry and fishery sector in the first 6 months this year was highest in the period of 2012-2018[3], of which agriculture continued to affirm a clear recovery trend when increased by 3.28%, contributing 0.45 percentage points to the growth rate of total added value of the whole economy; fishery achieved good results with an increase of 6.41%, also the highest growth rate in the past 8 years[4], contributing 0.21 percentage points; forestry increased by 5.12%, higher than the 4.31% increase of the same period last year, contributing only 0.04 percentage points due to its small share.

In the industry and construction sector, industry activities increased by 9.28%, much higher than the increase of 7.01% and 5.42% of the same period in 2016 and 2017, contributing 3.05 percentage points to the growth rate of total added value of the whole economy. The highlight of this area was the strong growth of manufacturing activities with an increase of 13.02% (the highest increase in the last 7 years[5]), contributing 2.63 percentage points. Meanwhile, the mining industry experienced negative growth (a decrease of 1.3%), causing a decline of 0.1 percentage points in the overall growth of the first 6 months, but the reduction shrunk considerably compared to the decrease of 7.8 % of the same period last year. Construction activities in the first 6 months maintained a good growth rate of 7.93%, contributing 0.48 percentage points.

The service sector in the first 6 months increased by 6.90%, considered the highest growth rate in the last 7 years[6]. In the service sector, contributions of some large-share economic activities to the increase of total value added of the economy were as follows: wholesale and retail sales increased by 8.21% compared to the same period last year, enjoyed the highest growth rate in the service sector, contributed the largest share to total value added of the economy (0.86 percentage points); finance, banking and insurance activities increased by 7.58%, contributing 0.35 percentage points; accommodation and catering services expanded 7.02%, contributing 0.33 percentage points; transportation and storage activities went up 7.67%, contributing 0.25 percentage points; real estate business increased by 4.12%, contributing 0.25 percentage points.

Regarding economic structure in the first 6 months, the agriculture, forestry and fishery sector accounted for 14.15% of GDP; the industry and construction sector accounted for 33.78%; the service sector accounted for 41.82%; the product tax minus product subsidies accounted for 10.25% (the corresponding structure of the same period in 2017 was: 15.06%; 32.75%; 41.82%; 10.37%).

From the expenditure approach of GDP in the first 6 months, final consumption increased by 7.13% over the same period in 2017; gross capital formation increased 7.06%; export of goods and services by 15.72%; imports of goods and services increased by 14.83%.

  1. Agriculture, forestry and fishery

      a) Agriculture

Agricultural production in 6 beginning months 2018 gained good results. The weather was favorable for plants to grow and develop, especially paddy. Area of ​​cultivated winter-spring paddy in the country this year reached 3,102.2 thousand hectares, an equal to 99.5%  compared with the same period last year, of which Northern localities gained 1,127.6 thousand hectares, an equal to 98.5%; Southern provinces reached 1,974.6 thousand hectares, equaled to 100.1%. Area of ​​winter-spring paddy in recent years tended to narrow down, mainly because many localities in the Red River Delta and Mekong River Delta converted a part of the paddy farm area into other[7] uses. According to preliminary reports, the yield of winter-spring paddy in the country was estimated at 66.2 quintal/ha, increased by 3.9 quintals/hectare compared with the previous winter-spring paddy, of which Northern provinces gained 63.7 quintals/hectare, an increase of 1.4 quintals/hectare; Southern provinces reached 67.6 quintals/hectare, an increase of 5.3 quintals/ha. The yield of winter-spring paddy in the country was estimated at 20.5 million tons, increased by 1.1 million tons compared with the winter-spring paddy in 2017, of which the production of winter-spring paddy in the North gained 7.2 million tons, rose by 58, 2 thousand tons (particularly Red River Delta reached 3.5 million tons, fell 47.2 thousand tons due to the decrease of cultivated area); Southern region reached 13.3 million tons, increased by 1,050.9 thousand tons (Mekong River Delta region reached over 10.8 million tons, grew up 950.5 thousand tons).

Along with the harvested winter-spring paddy, the localities in the country sowed 1,891.1 thousand hectares of summer-autumn paddy, an equal to 98.3% compared with the same period last year (the Mekong River Delta reached 1,528.5 thousand hectares, equal to 98.3%), mainly due to the effect of planting progress and harvest of this winter-spring paddy later than the same period last year. So far, there were 190.6 thousand hectares of early summer-autumn paddy in Mekong River Delta for harvested, an equal to 52.6% compared with the same period in 2017. Currently, summer-autumn paddy was developing well, localities needed to strengthen their work, checked and prevent pests, diseases and guided farmer in tending paddy in a properly way to achieve high yield.

As of mid-June, localities in the country planted 552.4 thousand hectares of maize, an equal to 94.4% compared with the same period last year; 81.1 thousand hectares of sweet potatoes, an equal to 88.5%; 32 thousand hectares of soybean, an equal to 85.6%; 144.1 thousand hectares of peanuts, an equal to 96.5%; 722.3 thousand hectares of vegetables and beans, an equal to 103.5%.

Production of some perennial industrial trees increased compared with the same period last year: Tea reached 472.3 thousand tons, grew up 3.7%; cashew reached 255.9 thousand tons, grew by 30%; pepper reached 263.6 thousand tons, grew up 6.5%. Production of some fruit was quite good: Grapes reached 15.7 thousand tons, grew up 4.8% compared with the same period in 2017; mango reached 479.1 thousand tons, grew up 6.9%.

In general, buffalo, cattle and poultry husbandry witnessed stability and disease was controlled. Particularly, pig farming in first months of the year faced many difficulties in consumption but from April the price of pig living weight increased again. As of June, buffalo population in the country decreased by 1% compared with the same period last year; cattle population increased by 2.2%; poultry population increased by 5.2%; pigs population decreased by 3%. Production of buffalo living weight in 6 beginning months of the year reached 50.8 thousand tons, grew up 1.2% compared with the same period last year; production of cattle living weight reached 185.4 thousand tons, grew up 2.8%; production of pig living weight reached 2.2 million tons, decreased by 1%; production of poultry living weight reached 608.4 thousand tons, grew up 6.1%;

Eggs reached 6.3 billions, an increase of 11.3%; Fresh milk production reached 470 thousand tons, grew up 8.1%. As of June 27, 2018, there were no diseases on cattle and poultry in the country.

        b) Forestry

Forestry production in 6 beginning months of 2018 was generally good. Area of ​​concentrated forests in 6 months was estimated at 101.6 thousand hectares, grew up 2.4% compared with the same period last year; the number of scattered planted trees reached 36.7 million, an increase of 0.1%; production of exploited firewood reached 13.1 million ste, a decrease of 1.7%; production exploited wood reached 5,444 thousand m3, an increase of 9.1%, of which timber was mainly from planted forest in exploitation period. Some localities gained quite good timber production: Quang Nam reached 482 thousand m3, grew up 11.6%; Phu Tho reached 280.9 thousand m3, an increase of 13.2%; Quang Ngai reached 492 thousand m3, grew up 14.7%; Quang Binh reached 183 thousand m3, grew up 24.7%; Nghe An reached 315 thousand m3, an increase of 31.6%. Production of wood cut increased mainly due to increasing demand for wood materials in traditional markets such as China, the United States and Japan, but also attracted other markets such as Sri Lanka, India and Bra -xin, Malaysia, Bangladesh.

In 6 begining months of 2018, there were 555 hectares of forest damaged in the country, a decrease of 36.6% compared with the same period last year, included forest fire was 158.5 hectares, decreased by 55.3%; Area of deforested forest was 396.5 hectares, decreased by 23.9%. Some localities saw much deforested forest area: Dak Nong 112.4 hectares; Son La 76.7 hectares; Dak Lak 40.5 hectares.

       c) Fishery

Total fishery production in 6 beginning months was estimated at 3,561.1 thousand tons, rose by 5.7% compared with the same period last year, of which fish reached 2,676.8 thousand tons, rose by 5.7%; shrimp reached 370.4 thousand tons, rose by 9.5%;  production of other fisheries reached 513.9 thousand tons, rose by 2.7%.

Production of aquaculture in 6 months reached 1,793.5 thousand tons, rose by 6.4% compared with the same period last year, of which fish reached 1,310.2 thousand tons, rose by 6.1%; shrimp reached 292.6 thousand tons, rose by 11.2%; other fisheries production reached 190.7 thousand tons, rose by 1.7%. Pegasus farming got favorable price, farmers made profit so farming area was expanded. Generally in 6 months, area of ​​Pegasus farming in the country was estimated at 14.3 thousand hectares, rose by 6.8% compared with the same period last year, of which area of ​​intensive and semi-intensive Pegasus farming was 4, 5 thousand hectares, rose by 10.2%; area of ​​extensive and extensive pangasius farming was 9.8 thousand hectares, rose by 5.3%. Pegasus production in 6 months was estimated at 603.1 thousand tons, rose by 8.1% compared with the same period last year, of which Dong Thap reached 191.8 thousand tons, rose by 4.5%; An Giang 159.8 thousand tons, rose by 14.7%. Despite difficulties caused by the high anti-dumping tax imposed by the US Government on pangasius imported from Vietnam and the export to the EU market  was declining, thanked to the flexibility of Market conversions, exported to Thailand, Singapore, Philippines and especially China so pangasius exports was still quite good. It was estimated that in 6 beginning months of the year, pangasius exports reached USD 981 million, rose by 17.3% compared with the same period last year. The weather in the beginning months of the year was favorable for brackish shrimp farming, the price of black tiger shrimp was high and the stable market. Production of black tiger shrimp in 6 beginning months of this year was estimated at 106.3 thousand tons, rose by 5.9% compared with the same period in 2017. Particularly white leg shrimp, although the production of 6 beginning  months was quite good with 151.9 thousand tons, an increase of 14.5% compared with  the same period last year but currently which was facing difficulties because since May the price of white shrimp dropped sharply caused by abundant supply, the world price dropped and competed with Indian shrimp and Thailand.

Production of fishery catching in 6 begining months was estimated at 1,767.6 thousand tons, grew up 5% compared with the same period last year, of which fish reached 1,366.6 thousand tons, grew up 5.4%; shrimp reached 77.8 thousand tons, grew up 3.6%; production of other fisheries reached 323.2 thousand tons, grew up 3.3%. The weather in first months of the year was relatively favorable for marine catching, number of ships with capacity of over 90CV increased (as of 1/5/2018, 33.8 thousand ships, grew up 2.7% compared with the same period in 2017). Besides, the marine logistics service developed that helped fishermen feel secure to stay in the sea long, contributed to improve the marine catching. Fishery production in 6 months reached 1,684.7 thousand tons, increased by 5.2% compared with the same period last year, of which fish reached 1,310.2 thousand tons, increased by 5.7%; shrimp reached 71.4 thousand tons, increased by 3.3%.

  1. Industrial production

Industrial production in the month achieved a good growth rate. The index of industrial production (IIP) in June was estimated to increase by 12.3% over the same period last year, of which the mining and quarrying fell by 3.6%; the manufacturing increased by 15.5%; production and distribution of electricity rose 10%; water supply, waste and sewerage remediation climbed up 8%.

Generally for the first 6 months of 2018, the index of industrial production increased by 10.5% over the same period last year (a upturn of 12.9% and 8.4% in the first and second quarter, respectively), higher than the increase of 7 % in the same period in 2017[8]. Particularly, manufacturing activities continued to be the leading driver of the industry sector with an increase of 12.7%, contributing 9.7 percentage points to the overall growth, but tending to slow down; production and distribution of electricity increased by 10.4%, contributing 0.9 percentage points; water supply, waste and sewerage remediation increased by 6.7%, contributing 0.1 percentage points; only mining and quarrying activities saw a decline of 1.3% (mainly due to the decrease of 5.7% in crude oil and natural gas exploitation), reducing the overall growth by 0.2 percentage points.

Relating usage of industrial products, IIP of intermediate consumption (serving for the following production process) in the first 6 months of 2018 increased by 10.7% compared to the same period last year; products for final consumption increased by 10.3% (products for intermediate and final consumption grew 7.7% and 11.6%, respectively).

In the 2-digit industrial activities, the IIP in 6 months in some industrial activities gained a sharp rise year-on-year, contributing majority to the general growth of the whole industrial sector, specifically: manufacture of metal increased by 20.7%[9]; manufacture of coke and refined petroleum products rose 20.3%; manufacture of fabricated metal products (except machinery and equipment) increased by 18.4%; manufacture of electronic, computer and optical products spread 17.5% (increased strongly by 30.1% in the first quarter but rose only 4%[10] in the second quarter); manufacture of pharmaceuticals, medicinal chemical and botanical products went up 16.2%. Some industrial activities had a moderate increase or decrease as follows: manufacture of tobacco products increased by 2.7%; manufacture of wood and of products of wood and wooden, bamboo, rattan increased by 2.6%; other mining and quarrying (stone, sand and gravel…) decreased by 0.7%; repair, maintenance and installation of machinery and equipment grew 2.7%; extraction of crude oil and natural gas reduced by 5.7% (crude oil exploitation decreased by 10.9% and natural gas exploitation declined 0.2%).

A number of main industrial products in 6 months increased highly compared to the same period last year: iron and crude steel increased by 43.7%; fabric from polyester and artificial yarn rose 22.1%; refined sugar went up 18.9%; liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) increased by 18.5%; aquatic feed grew 17.8%; TV expanded 17%; steel bar, equal angle steel spread 16%. However, some industrial products experienced the slight increase or decline, including: mobile phones, NPK mixed fertilizer, sodium glutamate, and animal feed increased by 2.1%, 2%, 1.6%, and 0.6%, respectively; fresh milk equal to the same period last year; natural gas, urea fertilizers, shampoo and conditioner, shower gel, facial cleanser, and crude oil decreased by 0.2%, 1.8%, 2.3%, 6.6%, and 10.9%, respectively.

In the first 6 months of this year, the index of industrial production in 63 provinces and cities directly under the Central Government increased compared to the same period last year, of which Ha Tinh Ha Tinh province reached the highest growth rate of 170.9%, mainly due to the contribution of Formosa Corporation. The index of industrial production in the first 6 months compared to the same period last year of some provinces with large share of industrial activities was as follows: Hai Phong increased by 24%; Bac Ninh went up 19.2%; Thai Nguyen rose 12.1%; Vinh Phuc expanded 11.9%; Quang Ninh spread 11%; Hai Duong grew 10.6%; Binh Duong rose 8.8%; Dong Nai increased by 8.3%; Ha Noi had an upturn of 8%; Da Nang enjoyed a rise of 7.8%; Can Tho increased by 7.4%; Ho Chi Minh City spread 7.1%; Quang Nam grew 5.6%; Ba Ria-Vung Tau increased by 2%.

The index of industrial shipment of the manufacturing in June 2018 increased by 5% over the previous month and 7.9% compared to the same period last year. Generally, in the first 6 months of 2018, the index of industrial shipment of the manufacturing increased by 11.9% compared to the same period last year (the same period in 2017 increased by 8.4%), of which some industrial activities recorded a significant increase in the index of shipment, specifically: manufacture of pharmaceuticals, medicinal chemical and botanical products increased 49.1%; manufacture of motor vehicles increased by 21%; manufacture of metal increased by 15.6%; manufacture of products from non-metallic minerals rose 15%; manufacture of coke and refined petroleum products grew 14.9%. Some industrial activities possessed a moderate increase in the index of shipment, particularly: manufacture of chemicals and chemical products increased by 3.8%; manufacture of electrical equipment increased by 3.3%; manufacture of transport vehicle increased by 2.4%; manufacture of wood and products from wood and bamboo decreased by 1.1%.

The index of industrial inventory of manufacturing activities as of 30th June, 2018 was estimated to increase by 11.4% compared to the same period last year (the same time in 2017 increased by 10.4%), of which some industrial activities experienced a lower rise in the index of industrial inventory than general growth or decrease: manufacture of tobacco increased by 2%; manufacture of beds, wardrobes, tables and chairs grew 1.8%; manufacture of fabricated metal products (except machinery and equipment) expanded 8.3%; manufacture of motor vehicles decreased by 16.8%; manufacture of pharmaceuticals, medicinal chemical and botanical declined 28%. Some industrial activities possessed a remarkable increase in the index of industrial inventory against previous year: manufacture of coke, refined petroleum products soared 216.5% because this time last year Dung Quat Oil Refinery stopped operating to periodic maintenance of machinery and equipment; manufacture of electronic, computer and optical products escalated 144.1%, mainly due to the inventory of Samsung mobile phone and tablet products pending for export; manufacture of transport vehicles jumped up 132.7%; manufacture of electrical equipment surged up 47.1%; manufacture of products from non-metallic minerals increased by 36.8%; manufacture of rubber and plastic products increased by 31.8%.

The average index of industrial inventory of the manufacturing in the first 6 months of 2018 was 63.4%, which was the lowest level of inventory in recent years[11]. Some industrial activities had high index of industrial inventory: textile was 287.5%; manufacture of wood and products from wood, bamboo (except for beds, cabinets, tables, chairs) was 117.2%; manufacture of motor vehicles was79.4%; food processing was 75.1%.

The number of employees working in industrial enterprises as of 1st June, 2018 increased by 3.1% compared to the same period last year, of which employees in state-owned enterprises decreased by 0.2%; in non-state and FDI enterprises together increased by 3.5%. At this time, the number of employees working in manufacturing enterprises increased by 3.2% over the same period last year; water supply, waste and sewerage remediation rose 2.2%; production and distribution of electricity grew 0.2%; particularly, mining and quarrying activities decreased by 0.9% (employees in exploitation of crude oil and natural gas decreased by 9.8%).

The number of employees in industrial enterprises at the time of 1st June, 2018 compared to the same period last year of some provinces with large share of industrial  activities was as follows: Can Tho increased by 23.2%; Hai Phong increased by 14%; Dong Nai increased by 5.5%; Ha Noi increased by 4.5%; Ba Ria – Vung Tau increased by 3.8%; Binh Duong and Quang Ninh together increased 3.4%; Hai Duong increased by 3.3%; Ho Chi Minh City and Thai Nguyen increased by 0.2%; Bac Ninh decreased by 1.2%; Vinh Phuc decreased by 2.2%; Da Nang decreased by 4.2%.

  1. Operation of enterprise

     a. Enterprise registration status[12]

In June, there were 12,209 newly established enterprises with a registered capital of 132.1 trillion VND, an increase of 10.7% in number of enterprises and 26% in registered capital compared to the previous month[13]; the average registered capital of an enterprise reached 10.8 billion VND, up 13.8%; The total number of registered employees of newly established enterprises was 95.9 thousand employees, an increase of 19.1%. In the month, there were 2,725 re-operated enterprises, increasing by 18.2% over the previous month.

In the first 6 months of this year, there were 64,531 newly registered enterprises with a total registered capital of 649 trillion VND, an increase of 5.3% in number of enterprises and 8.9% in registered capital compared with the same period in 2017[14]; The average registered capital of a newly established enterprise reached 10.1 billion VND, rising by 3.4%. If including 1,192.2 trillion VND of additional registered capital of enterprises that recorded upward adjustment of capital, the total additional registered capital in the economy in 6 months of 2018 was 1,841.2 trillion VND. In addition, there were 16,449 re-operated enterprises, up 7% over the same period last year, bringing the total number of newly registered enterprises and re-operated enterprises in the first 6 months of this year to nearly 81 thousand enterprises. The total number of registered employees of newly established enterprises in the first 6 months of 2018 was 508.5 thousand employees, downturn 18.9% compared to the same period last year.

By economic activities, in the first 6 months of the year, there were 21.8 thousand newly established enterprise in the wholesale and retail, repair of automobiles and motorbikes (made up 33.8% of the total number of newly established enterprises), rose by 1.7% over the same period last year; 8.7 thousand construction enterprises (accounting for 13.5%), up 6%; 8 thousand manufacturing enterprises (shared 12.5%), went down 1%; 4.9 thousand enterprises in the science, technology, consultation service, designing, advertisement and others (made of 7.6%), up 4.7%; 3.8 thousand enterprises in the employment services, travel, renting and leasing machinery, equipment and other supporting services (accounting for 5.8%), a rise of 16.4%; 3.3 thousand enterprises in the accommodation and catering services (shared 5.2%), up 13.9%; 3.3 thousand enterprises in the real estate activities (accounting for 5.1%), up 44.2%; 2.9 thousand enterprises in the transportation and storage (accounting for 4.4%), went down 6.7% …

In the first 6 months of this year, some economic regions of the whole country saw an increase in the number of newly established enterprises over the same period last year: The Red River Delta had 19.2 thousand enterprises, an increase of 1.5% (the registered capital reached 189.9 trillion VND, gained 34.4%); Northern Midlands and Mountains had 2.7 thousand enterprises, up 6.7% (registered capital of 23.8 trillion VND, a reduction of 18.2%); North Central and Central Coastal areas had 9.1 thousand enterprises, went up 10% (registered capital of 87.9 trillion VND, up 12.4%); Central Highlands had 1.6 thousand enterprises, up 1.4% (registered capital of 9.9 trillion VND, went down 25.7%); Southeast had 27.3 thousand enterprises, up 6.1% (registered capital of 292.6 trillion VND, down 3.6%); Mekong River Delta had 4.6 thousand enterprises, up 8.7% (registered capital of 44.9 trillion VND, rose up 45.8%).

In the first 6 months of 2018, the number of temporarily ceased enterprises was 52,803 enterprises, an increase of 39.3% compared to the same period last year, including 17,984 enterprises ceased for a certain period of time, up 25.1% and 34,819 enterprises temporarily ceased without registered or awaited for dissolution, up 48%[15]. By economic activities, the number of enterprises ceased for a certain period of time increased in almost economic activities compared to the same period last year: the wholesale and retail, repair of automobile and motorbike had 7.1 thousand enterprises (accounting for 39.2%), a rise of 24.5%; 2.7 thousand construction enterprises (accounting for 15.3%), an upturn of 25.9%; 2.2 thousand manufacturing enterprises (accounting for 12.5%), rising up 20.1%; 945 enterprises in the accommodation and catering services (accounting for 5.3%), went up 29.3% … For enterprises temporarily ceased without registration or awaited dissolution, there were 12.3 thousand enterprises in the wholesale and retail,  repair of automobiles and motorbikes (made up 35.4%), an increase of 23.4% over the same period last year; 5.3 thousand construction enterprises (making up 15.1%), rising by 65.8%; 4.5 thousand manufacturing enterprises (accounting for 13%), jumped up 70.6%; 2.1 thousand enterprises in the employment services, travel, renting and leasing machinery, equipment and other supporting services (accounting for 6.1%), up 84.2%; 1.9 thousand enterprises in the accommodation and catering services (accounting for 5.4%), up 71.7% …

In the first 6 months of 2018, the number of enterprises completed dissolution procedures was 6,629 enterprises, an increase of 21.8% compared to the same period last year, of which 6,053 enterprises with capital size of less than 10 billion VND, gained 91.3 % and a rise of 20.6%. Enterprises completed dissolution procedures mainly focused in the economic activities: Wholesale and retail, repair of automobile and motorbike with 2,538 enterprises, up 23.5% over the same period last year; the manufacturing enterprises had 934 enterprises, a growth of 33.4%; the construction enterprises had 707 enterprises, an increase of 13%.

      b. Business trend of enterprises

Results of the business trend survey of the manufacturing enterprises in the second quarter of 2018 showed that 45% of the enterprises assessed that the business production situation in the second quarter of this year was better than the quarter before; 17.4% of enterprises faced difficulties and 37.6% of enterprises said that the business production situation was stable[16]. For expected outcome of the third quarter, 52.5% of enterprises presented that the trend would get better in comparison with the second quarter of this year; 11.5% of enterprises predicted that it would be more difficult and 36% of enterprises said that the business production situation would be stable.

Among the main factors affecting the business production of enterprises in the second quarter of this year, 59.4% of enterprises believed that the high competitiveness of domestic goods was the most influential factor to operation of enterprises; 46.2% of enterprises said that demand of domestic market was low; 32% of enterprises showed that to face financial difficulties; 30.7% of enterprises blamed for not recruiting qualified employees; 26.9% of enterprises believe that high interest rates and 23.4% of enterprises believe that high competitiveness of imports goods was an important factor.

Regarding production volume, 47.3% of enterprises pointed out production volume of enterprises in quarter II/2018 increased compared to the previous quarter; 17.4% of enterprises reported that the production volume decrease and 35.3% of enterprises considered stable[17]. The trend in the third quarter, 52.6% of enterprises forecasted an increase in production volume compared to the second quarter of this year; 10.4% of enterprises forecasted a decrease and 37% of enterprises predicted stability.

Regarding orders for goods, 39.8% of enterprises had more orders in the second quarter than the previous quarter of this year; 17.2% of enterprises gained fewer orders and 43% of enterprises recorded stable orders[18]. The trend in the third quarter continued to be more positive compare to the second quarter of 2018, with 46% of enterprises expected an increase in orders; 10.5% of enterprises expected a decrease in orders and 43.5% of enterprises expected to have stable orders.

Regarding export orders, there were 33.6% of enterprises confirmed more export orders in the second quarter of this year compared to the previous quarter; 15.2% of enterprises experienced fewer export orders and 51.2% of enterprises kept export orders stable. The trends in the third quarter compared with the second quarter of 2018, 39.3% of enterprises expected to have an increase in export orders; 9.9% of enterprises expected to decrease and 50.8% of enterprises expected to be stable.

  1. Service operation

      a) Retail sales of goods and services

Trade and service activities in the first 6 months took place vibrantly, essential goods were provided fully and promptly for production needs as well as people’s life. The management, inspection and control of market prices were strengthened, contributing to boost domestic trade activities, stimulating consumer purchasing power.

Gross retail sales of consumer goods and services in June were estimated at 364.5 trillion VND, up 1.9% over the previous month and up 12.5% over the same period last year, of which: Retail sales of goods reached 272.3 trillion VND, an increase of 2.1% and an increase of 12.9%; revenue from accommodation and catering services reached 44.9 trillion VND, up 1% and up 9.4%; traveling revenue reached 3.4 trillion, up 6.9% and increased by 5%; other service revenue gained 43.9 trillion VND, an increase of 1% and of 14%. In the first 6 months of the year, gross retail sales of consumer goods and services were estimated at 2,120.9 trillion VND, up 10.7% over the same period last year, if excluding price factor, increased by 8.3% (higher than the rate 7.9% of the same period in 2017).

By activities, retail sales of goods in the first 6 months were estimated at 1,597.4 trillion VND, accounting for 75.3% of the total and increasing by 11.3% over the same period last year because goods on the market were diversified in models, relatively stable prices and quality assurance that met the demand of purchasing goods for consumption of people and tourists. In particular, the food and foodstuff items increased by 12.4%; garments up by 12.3%; appliances, tools and household equipment up by 12%; cultural and educational items increased by 9.5%; vehicles rose by 8.8%. Some provinces achieved a good increase, as follows: Thai Nguyen by 13.1%; Ho Chi Minh City by 12.7%; Thanh Hoa by 12.5%; Ha Noi by 12.4%; Binh Dinh by 12.4%; Nam Dinh by 12.2%; and Hai Duong by 11.6%.

Revenue from accommodation and catering services in 6 months was estimated at 260.9 trillion VND, accounting for 12.3% of the total and increasing by 9.6% over the same period last year, of which Lam Dong rose by 15.8%; Khanh Hoa expanded by 12.8%; Quang Ninh increased by 12.5%; Binh Dinh grew by 11.7%; Da Nang accelerated by 11.2%; Thanh Hoa increased by 10.7%; Ho Chi Minh City rose by 9.6%; and Ha Noi expanded by 7.8%.

Traveling revenue in the first 6 months was estimated at 19.6 trillion VND, accounting for 0.9% of the total and increasing by 19.5% over the same period last year due to the upward tendency of domestic tourists and the increasing trend of overseas traveling of a part of high-income population. In addition, the implementation of visa exemption policy for Western European visitors, and strengthening the tourism promotion and all-in package tours links of Viet Nam with countries in the region had created a driving force for the development of the tourism industry, contributing to the increase in revenue from international visitors for “smokeless service industry”. Some provinces gained a good increase, including: Ca Mau by 28.8%; Ho Chi Minh City by 24.2%; Quang Ninh by 17.7%; and Ha Noi by 13.7%.

Revenue from other services in 6 months was estimated at 243 trillion VND, accounting for 11.5% of the total and increasing by 7.3% over the same period in 2017, of which revenue of Ba Ria – Vung Tau increased by 9.5%; Binh Duong rose by 9.3%; Ho Chi Minh City expanded by 7.9%; Dong Nai grew by 7.8%; and Ha Noi increased by 4.3%.

        b) Transportation and telecommunication

Passenger carriage in June was estimated at 387.9 million passengers, up 1.5% over the previous month and 17.4 billion passengers-kilometers, up 2.4%. In the first 6 months, passenger carriage reached 2,262.4 million passengers, an increase of 9.9% over the same period last year and 100.2 billion passengers-kilometers, an increase of 10.6%, of which passengers carried by road reached 2,134.8 million passengers, an increase of 10.1% and 69.5 billion passengers-kilometers, an increase of 10.5%; by inland waterways reached 94.9 million persons, an increase of 5.9% and 1,797.8 million passengers.km, an increase of 6%; by seaway reached 3.6 million passengers, up 6.1% and 216.3 million passengers.km, up 6.7%; by airway achieved quite a good number with 24.6 million passengers, an increase of 15.2% and 26.7 billion passengers-kilometers, an increase of 12.5% ​​as airlines opened some international routes as well as promoted the exploitation of the domestic market at the same time. Railway transport caused many serious accidents, along with the price of train tickets was not competitive with budget aviation and road transportation, so it was estimated to reach 4.5 million passengers in 6 months, down by 10.6% over the same period last year and 1.9 billion passengers.km, down by 4.5%.

Cargo carriage in June was estimated at 136.3 million tons, up 0.9% from the previous month and 25.4 billion tons-kilometers, up 1%. Generally for 6 months, freight carriage reached 796.2 million tons, up 9.3% over the same period last year and 147.9 billion tons.km, up 6.6%, of which domestic transport reached 779.4 million tons, up 9.5% and 79.6 billion tons.km, up 9.7%; foreign transport reached 16.8 million tons, up 2.3% and 68.3 billion tons.km, up 3.2%. By types of transport, the road reached 614.5 million tons, an increase of 10.1% compared to the same period last year and 40.5 billion tons.km, an increase of 10.4%; Inland waterways reached 140.7 million tons, up 7.4% and 29.7 billion tons.km, up 7%; seaway reached 38 million tons, up 4.4% and 75.4 billion tons.km, up 4.3%; airways reached 176.4 thousand tons, up 14.8% and 463.2 million tons.km, up 13.2%; railway reached 2.9 million tons, up 4.1% and 1.9 billion tons.km, up 13.5%.

Revenue from telecommunications activities in the first 6 months of 2018 was estimated at 188.3 trillion VND, up 5.1% over the same period last year. As of the end of June 2018, the total number of telephone subscribers was estimated at 126.9 million, up 0.3% over the same period last year, of which mobile subscribers were 119.4 million, equaling to the same period last year; subscribers of fixed broadband internet were estimated at 12.6 million, up 25.4%.

         c) International visitors to Viet Nam

International visitors to Viet Nam in June were estimated at 1,183.1 thousand, increasing by 1.9% over the previous month, of which arrivals by airway rose by 3.9%; by seaway expanded by 3.2%; by road reduced by 8.1%. In comparison to the same period last year, international visitors to Viet Nam increased by 24.6%, of which visitors from Asia expanded by 29.7%; from Europe rose by 4.4%; from the Americas and Africa increased by 11.7% and 32%, respectively but from Australia decreased by 2.3%.

In the first 6 months of 2018, international visitors to Viet Nam were estimated at 7,891.5 thousand, increasing by 27.2% compared to the same period last year, of which arrivals by airway reached 6,369.6 thousand persons, up 22.2%; by road reached 1,348.2 thousand persons, an increase of 63.7%; by seaway reached 173.7 thousand persons, an increase of 1.7%.

In the first 6 months, international visitors to Viet Nam from Asia reached 6,067.2 thousand persons, accounting for 76.9% of the total number of tourists, up 32.7% over the same period last year, in which, visitors from almost major markets increased: China reached 2,568.8 thousand, an increase of 36.1%; South Korea 1,713.6 thousand, up 60.7%; Japan 404 thousand turns of people, up 6.6%; Taiwan 339 thousand persons, an increase of 13.8%; Malaysia 265.1 thousand persons, an increase of 14.5%; Thailand 168.8 thousand persons, an increase of 10.7%; Singapore 140.7 thousand persons, a rise of 6.2%. Particularly, visitors from Laos reached 60.4 thousand, decreasing by 11.5%.

European arrivals were estimated at 1,087.5 thousand, an increase of 11% compared to the same period last year, of which: visitors from Russian Federation 338.4 thousand, up 7.9%; United Kingdom 158 thousand, up 9%; France 153.3 thousand, increasing by 12.6%; Germany 111.6 thousand persons, an increase of 8.1%; Netherlands 35.3 thousand persons, up 10.7%; Italy, 33.2 thousand persons, an increase of 17.6%; Sweden 32.5 thousand persons, an increase of 16.2%

Visitors from the Americas reached 493 thousand persons, an increase of 13.5% over the same period last year, of which visitors from the United States reached 369.6 thousand, an increase of 15.4%. Visitors from Oceania reached 223.1 thousand persons, an increase of 10%, of which visitors from Australia reached 200.8 thousand, an increase of 10.6%. Visitors from Africa reached 20.8 thousand, up 22.2% over the same period in 2017.

      II. MACROECONOMICS STABILIZATION AND INFLATION CONTROL

  1. Banking and insurance activities

As of June 20, 2018, the total payment activities increased by 7.96% compared to the end of 2017 (same period in 2017 was a rise of 5.69%); capital mobilization of credit institutions increased by 7.78% (same period in 2017 was a growth of 5.89%); credit growth in the first 6 months of 2018 reached 6.35%  (same period in 2017 was a growth of 7.54%). A sharp increase of capital mobilization over same period in 2017 helped credit institutions to continuously stabilize liquidity, readily meet credit demand for the economy and ensure credit / mobilization ratio at a safe level.

The interest rate in the first months of 2018 was stable, the lending interest rates for priority sectors continuously decrease, of which state-owned commercial banks and some joint-stock commercial banks fell about 0.5% per year of interest rate for reliable customers. The lending interest rate for VND was popular about 6% -9% per year for short term; 9% -11% per year for medium and long term. Credit structure continued to focus on priority sectors, while strictly controlled credit for potential risk sectors such as real estate lending, consumer lending of financial companies… to ensure safety for banking activities.

The insurance activity in the first 6 months of 2018 maintained positive growth. The premium revenue of 6 months was estimated to increase by 23% compared to the same period in 2017, of which: the revenue of life insurance premium rose by 32%; non-life insurance premium increased by 13%.

  1. Development Investment

The realized investment in the first 6 months of 2018 was estimated at 747.6 trillion VND at current price, rising by 10.1% over the same period last year and sharing 32.9% of GDP, including: the state sector reached 249.8 trillion VND, accounting for 33.4% of the total and increasing by 3.3% over the same period last year; non-state sector reached 308.4 trillion VND, accounting for 41.3% and rising by 17.5%; foreign direct investment sector reached 189.4 trillion VND, accounting for 25.3% and rising by 8.5%.

The growth rate of the realized investment

6 months of 2016-2018 in comparison with the same period of previous year

(At current price)

Unit: %

6 months            year 2016 6 months
year 2017
6 months            year 2018
Total 110.3 111.2 110.1
State sector 105.4 106.5 103.3
Non-State sector 112.9 115.6 117.5
FDI sector 114.3 111.6 108.5

 

In the investment of the State sector, te realized capital from the State budget in 6 months was estimated at 124.2 trillion VND, equaling 36% of the yearly plan and going up 9.4% over the same period last year (the rates in 2017 were 36.9% and 6.1%, respectively), including:

– The capital under central management reached 22.8 trillion VND, equaling 34.6% of the yearly plan and decreasing 7.6% compared to the same period last year, of which the realized investment of the Ministry of Transportation reached 8,014 billion VND, equaling 43.5% and going down 41.8%; Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development 2,242 billion VND, equaling 27.8% and increasing by 16.8%; Ministry of Health 884 billion VND, equaling 26.7% and decreasing by 44.9%; Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment 473 billion VND, equaling 31.9% and rising by 56.1%; Ministry of Education and Training 385 billion VND, equaling 28.3% and increasing by 31.7%; Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism 233 billion VND, equaling 31.1% and climbing up 5.9%; Ministry of Construction 92 billion VND, equaling 33.6% and decreasing by 59.8%; Ministry of Industry and Trade 80 billion VND, equaling 36.3% and decreasing by 18.1%; Ministry of Science and Technology 73 billion VND, equaling 30.2% and increasing 54.2%; Ministry of Information and Communications 43 billion VND, equaling to 32.4% and rising by 22.4%.

– The capital under local management achieved 101.4 trillion VND, equaling 36.3% of the yearly plan and increasing by 14.1% over the same period last year, of which: State budget capital reached 70.3 trillion VND, equaling 33.9% of the year plan and going up 13.7%; State budget capital at district level reached 26 trillion VND, equaling 41.8% and increasing by 15.5%; state budget capital at commune-level reached 5,114 billion VND, equaling 52.4% and up 13.8%. The realized investment from the State budget of some provinces and cities directly under the Central Government was as follows: Ha Noi reached 14.6 trillion VND, equaling 38.4% of the yearly plan and increasing by 4.2% over the same period last year; Ho Chi Minh City 8,346 billion VND, equaling to 20.1% and rising by 7.9%; Quang Ninh 3,447 billion, equaling 35.6% and increasing by 32.3%; Hai Phong VND 3,110 billion VND, equaling 34.1% and increasing by 67.8%; Thanh Hoa 2,951 billion VND, equaling 46.9% and increasing by 35.3%; Nghe An 2,663 billion VND, equaling 45.5% and going up 2.3%; Ba Ria – Vung Tau 2,636 billion VND, equaling 40.5% and increasing by 25.2%; Binh Duong 2,631 billion VND, equaling 33% and increasing by 7.1%.

In general, the implementation of investment in recent months witnessed a positive trend but remained low compared to the annual plan, especially in public investment. In the last months of the year, besides strengthening the attraction of investment for development, line ministries and provinces should focus on implementing the solutions to overcome difficulties and speed up disbursement progress under the direction of the Government to ensure the annual growth target as planned.

Foreign direct investment from the beginning of the year to 20th, June 2018 attracted 1,366 newly licensed projects with a registered capital of 11,799.8 million USD, an increase of 15.5% in number of projects and a decrease of      0.3% of registered capital compared to the same period in 2017. Besides, 507 projects which were licensed in the previous years registered to adjust investment with an additional capital of 4,434.2 million USD, a reduction of 13.8% compared to the same period last year. Thus, the total newly registered and additional registered capital in 6 months reached 16,234 million USD, a decrease of 4.4% compared to the same period of 2017. The realized foreign direct investment capital in the first 6 months was estimated to reach 8.37 billion USD, an increase of 8.4% compared to the same period in 2017. In 6 months of 2018, there were 2,749 turns of capital contribution and share purchase of foreign investors with a total capital contribution of 4.1 billion. USD, an increase of 82.4% compared to the same period in 2017, of which 390 turns of capital contributions and shares purchase increased the charter capital of enterprises with the capital contribution of 1.4 billion USD and 2,359 turns of foreign investors repurchased domestic shares without increasing charter capital with the value of 2.7 billion USD.

In 6 months of 2018, the real estate activity attracted the most foreign direct investment with the registered capital of newly licensed projects reaching 4,971.1 million USD, accounting for 42.1% of the total newly granted capital; the manufacturing activity reached 4,098.4 million USD, accounting for 34.7%; other sectors reached 2,730.3 million USD, accounting for 23.2%. If including supplementary registered capital of projects licensed from previous years, foreign direct investment in manufacturing industries in the first 6 months of this year reached 6,921.3 million USD, accounted for 42.6% of the total registered capital; real estate activity reached 5.155 million USD, represented for 31.8%; other sectors reached 4,157.7 million USD, made up 25.6%. For capital contribution, buying shares of foreign investors, capital invested in the manufacturing activity reached 988.3 million USD, accounted for 24.1% of the total value of capital contribution; the wholesale and retail trade; repair of motor vehicles, motorcycles reached 946.3 million USD, accounted for 23.1%; the other sectors reached 2,164.7 million USD, represented for 52.8%

In the whole country, there were 45 provinces and centrally-run cities had newly licensed foreign direct investment projects lisenced in the first 6 months, of which Ha Noi had the largest registered capital with 5,503.9 million USD, accounted for 46.6% of total newly registered capital; followed by Ba Ria – Vung Tau with 1,639.8 million USD, accounted for 13.9%; Ho Chi Minh City 542.5 million USD, represented for 4.6%; Binh Duong 448.6 million USD, accounted for 3.8%; Dong Nai 414.4 million USD, accounted for 3.5%; Ninh Thuan 385.1 million USD, made up 3.3%; Bac Lieu 365.8 million USD, accounted for 3.1%; Hai Phong with 324.8 million USD, accounted for 2.8%; Ha Nam had 204.2 million USD, accounted for 1.7%.

Among 56 countries and territories had newly licensed investment projects in Vietnam in the first 6 months of this year, Japan ranked the top with 5,573.4 million USD, accounted for 47.2% of total newly registered capital; followed by South Korea with 3,137.7 million USD, accounted for 26.6%; Thailand 660.4 million USD, accounted for 5.6%; Singapore 549.2 million USD, accounted for 4.7%; Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (China) 394.1 million USD, accounted for 3.3%; China 328 million USD, accounted for 2.8%; Netherlands 186.6 million USD, made up 1.6%.

Vietnam’s outward foreign direct investment in first 6 months of this year had 67 projects granted investment certificates with a total capital of 222.5 million USD; 16 projects adjusted capital with a supplementary capital of 40.6 million USD. In general, the total outward foreign direct investment of Vietnam (newly licensed and supplementary capital) reached reached USD 263.1 million USD, of which the financial and banking sectors reached 106.2 million USD, accounted for 40.4% of total investment; agriculture, forestry and fishery reached 63.7 million USD, accounted for 24.2%; manufacturing activity reached 48.9 million USD, accounted for 18.6%. In 6 months, Vietnam outward invested in 27 countries and territories, of which Lao People’s Democratic Republic was the leading country with share of 31.9% of the total investment; Slovakia accounted for 13.7%; Cambodia represented for 12.3%.

  1. State budget revenue and expenditure

Total state budget revenue from the beginning of the year to 15th June, 2018 was estimated at 582.1 trillion VND, equaling 44.1% of the yearly estimate, of which domestic revenue reached 462.7 trillion VND, made up 42.1%; crude oil revenue was 27 trillion VND, equaling 75.1%; budget balance revenue from export and import gained 92 trillion VND, equaling 51.4%. In domestic revenues, state-owned enterprises reached 61.2 trillion VND, equaling 36.7% of the yearly estimate; FDI  (excluding crude oil) achieved 75.9 trillion VND, equaling 34%;  tax on industry, trade and non-state services revenue reached 94.4 trillion VND, equaling 43.3%; tax on personal income was 47.3 trillion VND, equaling 48.8%; tax on environmental protection recorded at 18.2 trillion VND, representing 37.3%; land use revenue reached 51.3 trillion VND, equaling 59.8%.

The state budget expenditure from the beginning of the year to 15th June 2018 was estimated at 586 trillion VND, equaling 38.5% of the yearly estimate, of which recurrent expenditures reached 416 trillion VND, equaling 44.2%; interest payment was 55.9 trillion VND, equaling 49.7%; Particularly, newly investment and development expenditures accounted for 27.8% of the yearly estimate, equaling 11.1 trillion VND. Line ministries and provinces focused on implementing solutions to overcome difficulties and speed up the disbursement of state capital under the direction of the Government.

  1. Export and import of goods and services

     a) Export of goods

Export turnover of goods in May 2018 reached 19,951 million USD, 751 million USD higher than the estimated figure, of which: textiles and garments was 204 million USD higher; footwear was 136 million USD higher; means of transport and spare parts was 111 million USD higher; fishery products was 66 million USD higher; electronic goods, computers and their parts was 64 million USD higher; machinery, instrument and accessory was 57 million USD higher; petroleum was 23 million USD higher; plastic products was 18 million USD higher; phones and their parts was 173 million USD lower than estimated.

Export turnover in June 2018 was estimated at 19.60 billion USD, down 1.8% from the previous month, of which: the domestic economic sector gained 5.93 billion USD, down 1.3%; FDI sector (including crude oil) reached 13.67 billion USD, down 1.9%. Many export products in June saw a decrease in turnover compared to the previous month: Coal fell by 40.5%; crude oil went down 18%; iron and steel reduced by 14%; rice decreased by 13.1%; textile fibers fell by 11.8%; machinery, instrument and accessory dropped 10.8%; means of transport and spare parts decreased by 8.5%. Some export products had increased turnover: Tea rose by 30.7%; petroleum increased by 23.5%; chemicals climbed up by 11.6%; textile increased by 6.2%. Compared to the same period last year, export turnover in June increased by 9.9%, of which: the domestic economic sector increased by 15.8%, the FDI sector (including crude oil) increased by 7.6%. Export turnover of some products increased over the same period last year: Machinery, instrument and accessory rose by 25.3%; electronic goods, computers and their parts went up by 19.1%; wood and wooden products jumped up by 17.8%; footwear increased by 11.6%; textiles and garments grew 5.8%.

In the first 6 months, export turnover was estimated at 113.93 billion USD, went up by 16% compared to the same period in 2017, of which: domestic economic sector was 33.07 billion USD, grew by 19.9%; FDI sector (including crude oil) reached 80.86 billion USD (accounting for 71% of total export turnover), increased by 14.5%. If excluding the price factor, export turnover in the first 6 months increased by 15.2% over the same period in 2017.

In the first 6 months of this year, 20 products had export turnover of over 1 billion USD, accounting for 85.6% of the total export turnover of the whole country. Export turnover of some main products continued to increase significantly over the same period last year: Phones and their parts reached 22.5 billion USD, up 15.4%; electronic goods, computers and their parts gained 13.5 billion USD, up 15.7%; textiles and garments attained 13.4 billion USD, up 13.8%; machinery, instrument and accessory reached over 7.8 billion USD, up 30.6%; footwears reached 7.8 billion USD, up 10.6%; means of transport and spare parts reached 4.1 billion USD, up 20.5%; wood and wooden products gained 4.1 billion USD, up 12.4%. In general, the export proportion of some main products still belonged to the FDI sector, of which: Phones and their parts accounted for 99.7%; electronic goods, computers and their parts shared 95.4%; machinery, instrument and accessory contributed 89.7%; textiles and garments shared 60.6%. Besides that, a number of agricultural and fishery products in the first 6 months also increased moderately: Fishery products achieved over 3.9 billion USD, up 11%; vegetables and fruits reached 2 billion USD, up 20.9%; rice gained 1.8 billion USD, up by 44.3% (volume increased by 26.2%); cashew nuts reached 1.7 billion USD, up 17.6% (volume rose by 18%). Although export volume of some agricultural products increased, export turnover decreased compared to the same period last year due to the decrease of the average export price: Coffee reached 2 billion USD, down 6% (volume increased by 9.6%); rubber gained 819 million USD, down 8.2% (volume rose by 16.6%); pepper attained 457 million USD, down 35.7% (volume increased by 5.9%). Particularly, both volume and export turnover of crude oil in 6 months continued to decrease sharply compared to the same period last year, despite the fact that the average export price increased by 37.3%: crude oil export turnover reached over 1 billion USD, decreased by 32.2% (volume reduced by 50.7%).

Regarding the structure of export commodity groups in the first 6 months of 2018, the group of heavy industrial and mineral products was estimated at 56.5 billion USD, up 18.9% over the same period last year; accounted for 49.6% of total export turnover (up 1.2 percentage points compared to the same period in 2017), of which: phones and their parts reached 22.5 billion USD, up 15.4% and sharing 19.7%. The group of light industrial and handicraft products was estimated at 42.3 billion USD, increasing by 13.8% and contributing 37.1% (decreasing by 0.7 percentage points). The group of agricultural and forestry products gained 11.2 billion USD, rising by 12% and accounting for 9.8% (decreasing by 0.4 percentage points). The group of seafood products was over 3.9 billion USD, going up by 11% and accounting for 3.5% (falling by 0.1 percentage points).

Regarding the export goods market in the first 6 months of 2018, the United States was Vietnam’s largest export market with a turnover of 21.5 billion USD, an increase of 9.2% over the same period last year, of which: textiles and garments increased by 9.9%; phones and their parts rose by 8.6%. The following was EU with 20.5 billion USD, going up by 12.3%, of which: machinery, instrument and accessory increased by 27.5%; electronic goods, computers and their parts increased by 16.6%; phones and their parts grew 16.5%. China reached 16.6 billion USD, an increase of 28%, of which: phones and their parts were 3 times higher than the same period last year; electronic goods, computers and their parts increased by 33%; vegetables rose by 20.1%. ASEAN market attained 12.2 billion USD, going up by 17.4%, of which: rice increased by 244.1%; iron and steel jumped up by 51.2%; phones and their parts increased by 9.2%. Japan reached 9 billion USD, growing 12.5%, of which: textiles and garments increased by 23.4%; machinery, instrument and accessory climbed up by 3.7%. South Korea gained 8.6 billion USD, increasing by 31.8%, of which: electronic goods, computers and their parts increased by 56.8%; phones and their parts went up by 31.1%; textiles and garments increased by 22.7%.

        b) Import of goods

The import turnover of goods in May 2018 reached 20,765 million USD, 1,065 million USD higher than the estimated figure, of which: electronic goods, computers and their parts were 445 million USD higher; medicines was 89 million USD higher; petroleum was 72 million USD higher; high quality plastic products was 69 million USD higher; machinery, instrument and accessory was 62 million USD higher; fabric was 55 million USD higher; plastics was 44 million USD higher; wheat was 34 million USD higher; vegetables was 26 million USD higher; iron and steel were 21 million USD higher; phones and their parts were 92 million USD lower than estimated.

Import turnover in June was estimated at 19.70 billion USD, went down by 5.1% over the previous month, of which: the domestic economic sector gained 8.30 billion USD, decreased by 7.9%; FDI sector reached 11.40 billion USD, fell by 3%. Import turnover of some products decreased compared to the previous month: Electronic goods, computers and their parts decreased by 10%; medicine dropped 27.8%; chemicals fell by 50%. Compared to the same period in 2017, import turnover in June increased by 8.5%, of which: the domestic economic sector increased by 12.5%; FDI sector increased by 5.7%. Turnover of some products increased over the same period last year: Iron and steel increased by 47.8%; petroleum increased by 39.6%; fabric rose by 28.7%.

In the first 6 months of 2018, import turnover was estimated at 111.22 billion USD, going up by 10% over the same period last year, of which: domestic economic sector was 46.01 billion USD, rising by 12.9%; FDI sector reached 65.21 billion USD, climbing up by 8.1%. If excluding the price factor, import turnover in 6 months increased by 8.9% compared to the same period in 2017.

In the first 6 months of 2018, estimated import turnover of 23 products reached over 1 billion USD, accounting for 82% of total import turnover. Many products for production, processing and assembly in the country increased in value over the same period last year: Electronic goods, computers and their parts reached 19.7 billion USD, going up by 14.3%; fabric gained 6.4 billion USD, increasing by 17.1%; iron and steel attained 5 billion USD, climbing up by 8.3%; petroleum reached 4.6 billion USD, rising by 38.8%; plastic products reached 4.3 billion USD, increasing by 19.8%; metals reached 3.4 billion USD, rising by 16%; textile and garment materials and footwear reached 2.9 billion USD, climbing up by 6.6%; chemicals reached 2.5 billion USD, going up by 26.4%.

Regarding structure of imported goods in the first 6 months of 2018, the group of capital goods was estimated at 101.9 billion USD, rising by 10.3% and accounting for 91.6% of the total import turnover (an increase of 0.2 percentage points over the same period in 2017), of which: the group of machinery, instrument and accessory reached 45 billion USD, increasing by 0.7% and sharing 40.5% (a reduction of 3.8 percentage points); Group of fuel and raw materials reached 56.9 billion USD, going up by 19.4% and contributing 51.1% (a rise of 4 percentage points). Consumer goods were estimated at 9.3 billion USD, going up by 6.9% and accounting for 8.4% (a fall of 0.2 percentage points).

Regarding the imported goods market in the first 6 months, China was still the largest import market of Vietnam with a turnover of 31.1 billion USD, going up by 15.6% compared to the same period in 2017, of which: fabric increased by 22.9%; phones and their parts increased by 14.4%. The following was the Korean market with import turnover of 22.5 billion USD, falling by 0.8%, of which: phones and their parts dropped 17.8%; machinery, instrument and accessory decreased by 39.8%. ASEAN reached 15.3 billion USD, rising by 11.8%, of which: fabric increased by 35.5%; petroleum increased by 28.6%; electronic goods, computers and their parts climbed up by 8.6%. Japan gained 8.8 billion USD, growing 12.2%, of which: electronic goods, computers and their parts increased by 26%; iron and steel jumped up by 13.1%. EU attained 6.4 billion USD, edged up by 9.2%, of which: chemicals increased by 23.2%; medicine increased by 6.7%. The United States gained 5.6 billion USD, going up by 16.3%, of which: animal feed and raw materials increased by 86.5%; machinery, instrument and accessory rose by 6.6%; electronic goods, computers and their parts increased by 2.9%.

The trade balance of goods maintained trade surplus from January to April but began trade deficit in May and June 2018. Trade balance of goods in May witnessed a trade deficit of 814 million USD[19]; estimated trade deficit in June reached 100 million USD. In the first 6 months, the trade surplus continued to be 2.71 billion USD[20], of which: the domestic economic sector saw a trade deficit of 12.94 billion USD; FDI sector (including crude oil) witnessed a trade surplus of 15.65 billion USD.

        c) Export and import of services

Export turnover of services in the first 6 months of 2018 was estimated at 7.5 billion USD, climbing up by 16.4% over the same period in 2017, of which: tourism services reached 5.2 billion USD (accounting for 69.1% of total turnover), going up by 18.9%; transportation services reached 1.4 billion USD (accounting for 18.7%), jumping up by 11.8%. Import turnover of services in 6 month was estimated at 8.8 billion USD, rising by 6.5% over the same period last year, of which: transportation services reached 4.2 billion USD (accounting for 47.4% of total turnover), growing by 7.5%; tourism services attained 2.7 billion USD (sharing 31%), rising by 9.4%.  Trade deficit of service in 6 months was 1.3 billion USD, equalled to 18% of service export turnover.

  1. Price index

      a) Consumer price index

The consumer price index (CPI) in June 2018 increased by 0.61% over the previous month, considered as June with the highest CPI increase in the last 7 years[21]. There were 10/11 groups of goods and services with price index increased over the previous month, of which food and catering services had the highest increase of 1.08%, mainly because the food group increased 1.75%[22] while food group fell 0.45%[23]. Transportation group increased 1.04% due to gasoline price increased by 2.38%[24]. Housing and construction materials group increased by 0.65%, mainly due to the increase of 0.2% in housing maintenance materials and the hot weather so the demand for electricity and water increased[25]. Culture, entertainment and tourism groups increased by 0.13%; education group increased by 0.11% (education services increased by 0.15%); beverage and cigarettes by 0.09%; apparel, hats and footwear by 0.06%; household appliances, medicine and medical services increased 0.03%; other goods and services increased by 0.02%. Particularly, the post and telecommunication group decreased by 0.11% over the previous month.

Average CPI in the first 6 months increased 3.29% compared to the average rate of the same period in 2017; CPI in June 2018 increased by 2.22% compared to December 2017 and increased by 4.67% compared to the same period last year. Average CPI in the first 6 months increased due to some following reasons: (i) Local authorities adjusted health service prices and implemented the tuition increase roadmap[26]; (ii) Fuel prices in the world market in the first 6 months increased sharply, leading to an average increase of 13.95% in petrol prices in the first 6 months, contributing 0.59% to the overall CPI increase; (iii) Prices of food items increased by 4.29% over the same period last year due to high price of rice during the Lunar New Year and in line with export rice prices, causing CPI to increase 0.19%; (iv) Prices of housing maintenance materials increased by 9.09% over the same period last year, contributing to the overall CPI increase of 0.14% due to increase in construction demand, price of cement, steel and steel products increased. In addition, there were a number of factors such as the increase in the regional minimum wage applied to employees in enterprises from January 1, 2018, which made average price of some services such as household appliances, housing maintenance and maid service increased by 2% – 8% compared to the same period last year.

Besides, there were some factors contributing to curbing CPI growth in the first 6 months of 2018: (i) Although pork price increased again in the last 3 months, the average price of pork in the first 6 months was still down by 2.44% compared to the same period last year, making the overall CPI fall by 0.1%; (ii) authorities at all levels and sectors actively took measures to stabilize market prices during the Lunar New Year, with the aim of constraining sudden price increase; (iii) The State Bank of Vietnam navigated a monetary policy firming to the target of macroeconomic stability and inflation control.

Core inflation in June 2018 increased by 0.1% over the previous month and increased by 1.37% over the same period last year. The average core inflation in the first 6 months of 2018 increased by 1.35% compared to the average of the same period in 2017.

         b) Gold and US dollar price index

Domestic gold prices fluctuated in line with world gold prices. Gold price index in June 2018 decreased by 0.79% compared to the previous month; increased by 2.08% compared to December 2017 and up 3.6% compared to the same period last year. The US dollar price index in June 2018 increased by 0.2% compared to the previous month; increased 0.46% compared to December 2017 and increased by 0.52% compared to the same period in 2017.

         c) Producer price index

The price index of raw materials, fuel and materials for production in the second quarter of 2018 increased by 1.08% compared to the previous quarter and increased by 4.78% over the same period last year, of which the price index of raw materials, fuel materials and materials used for agricultural, forestry and fishery production increased by 2.06% and by 1.9%; used for industrial production increased by 1.07% and increased by 4.77%; used for construction increased by 1.19% and by 5.76%. In the first 6 months, the price index of raw materials, fuel and materials used for production increased by 4.43% compared to the same period last year.

The producer price index of agricultural, forestry and fishery in the second quarter of this year increased by 1.2% compared to the first quarter and by 1.9% over the same period last year, of which the agricultural producer price index increased by 1, 61% and up 1.04%; forestry increased by 1.02% and by 3.33%; fishery decreased by 0.04% and increased by 4.43%. Generally for 6 months, the producer price index of agricultural, forestry and fishery decreased by 0.37% compared to the same period last year.

The producer price index of industry in the second quarter of 2018 increased by 0.51% compared to the previous quarter and increased by 3.02% compared to the same period last year, of which the producer price index of the mining increased by 3.31% and by 13.61%; manufacturing rose by 0.21% and by 2.1%; electricity, gas, hot water, steam and air conditioning rose by 1.47% and by 4.23%; water supply, waste management and treatment activities increased by 0.92% and by 2.08%. Generally for the first 6 months, the industrial producer price index increased by 2.83% compared to the same period last year.

The producer price index of serives for the second quarter of 2018 increased by 0.53% compared to the previous quarter and increased by 2.55% compared to the same period last year, of which the service producer price index of some activities were as follows: accommodation and catering services increased by 0.64% and by 2.28%; information and communication increased by 0.33% and by 0.51%; education and training increased by 0.12% and by 5.9%; health and social assistance increased by 0.49% and by 8.79%. Generally for the first 6 months, the producer price index of services increased by 2.74% over the same period last year.

The price index of transportation and storage freight in the second quarter increased by 0.84% compared to the previous quarter and increased by 3.28% compared to the same period last year, of which the rail freight decreased by 0.89% and increased by 4.34 %; road and bus transport increased by 0.32% and increased by 2%; waterways increased by 0.26% and by 3.66%; airway rose 3.68% and by 11.01%; storage and transportation supporting services increased by 0.48% and by 1.7%; postal and delivery services increased by 2.31% and by 2.39%. In the first 6 months, the price index of transportation and storage freight increased by 3.16% compared to the same period last year.

         d) Merchandise export, import price index

The merchandise export price index of the second quarter increased by 1.04% compared to the previous quarter and increased by 1.47% compared to the same period last year, of which the price index of agricultural products and food items decreased by 0.62% and by 0.96%; fuel group increased by 7.36% and by 21.95%; group of processed and manufactured products increased by 1.09% and 1.2%. The export price index of some items in the second quarter compared with the previous quarter was as follows: Ore and minerals increased by 36.55%; crude oil increased by 8.79%; mobile phones and devices increased by 5.74%; animal feed and raw materials increased by 3.62%. In the first 6 months, the export price index increased by 0.71% compared to the same period in 2017

The import price index in the second quarter increased by 0.69% compared to the previous quarter and increased by 1.4% compared to the same period last year, of which the import price index of agricultural and food products fell by 0.23% and by 0.36%; fuel group increased by 5.26% and by 12.56%; processed and manufactured goods increased by 0.54% and by 1.02%. The import price index of some items in the second quarter compared with the previous quarter was as follows: Petroleum products increased by 7.12%; vegetables and fruits rose by 4.59%; iron and steel rose by 3.32%; chemicals increased by 3.07%. In the first 6 months, the import price index increased by 1.08% compared to the same period last year.

The merchandise term of trade[27] in the second quarter increased by 0.35% compared to the previous quarter and by 0.07% over the same period last year, of which the merchandise term of trade of gasoline fell 4.89% and increased by 11.36%; rubber increased by 1.28% and decreased by 9.73%; computers, electronic products and components decreased by 0.42% and increased by 2.83%; phones and their parts increased by 5.66% and decreased by 0.11%. Generally, in the first 6 months, the merchandise term of trade decreased by 0.37% compared to the same period in 2017, mainly due to the decrease in the merchandise term of trade of 4 commodity groups: vegetables, chemicals, rubber, wood and wood products decreased, in which rubber group fell sharply by 9.83%.

      III. SOCIAL ISSUES

  1. Population, labor and employment

The national average population in 2018 was estimated at 94.66 million persons, of which the urban population was 33.63 million persons, accounted for 35.5%; the rural population was 61.03 million persons, made up 64.5%; meanwhile by gender, the male and female population was 46.75 million persons and 47.91 million persons respectively with the corresponding share of 49.4% and 50.6%.

As of 01 July 2018 labor force aged 15 years and over of the whole country was estimated at 55.1 million persons, an year on year increase of 594 thousand, in which the number of male employees was 28.8 million persons, accounted for 52.2%, the number of female employees was 26.3 million persons, made up 47.8%. By area, the employed population aged 15 years and over working in urban and rural area were 17.7 million persons and 37.4 million persons, respectively with the corresponding share of 32.2% and 67.8%.

As of 01 July 2018, labor force in working age was estimated at 48.4 million persons, a year on year increase of 539.8 thousand persons, of which male employees was 26.4 million persons, made up 54.5%; female employees was 22 million persons, accounted for 45.5%; employees in urban and rural area was 16.2 million persons and 32.2 million persons, respectively with the corresponding share of 33.5% and 66.5%.

In the first 6 months of this year, the employed population aged 15 years and over was estimated at estimated 54 million persons, of which employees of the agriculture, forestry and fishery sector were 20.8 million, made up 38.5% of the total employed population; the industry and construction sector was 14.4 million persons, the corresponding share of 26.7%; and the service sector was 18.8 million persons, with the corresponding share of 34.8%.

In Q2 2018, the unemployment rate of labor force in working age was estimated at 2.2% unchanged from Q1 figure. Generally, in the first 6 months of 2018, the unemployment rate of labor force in working age was estimated at 2.2%, of which urban area was 3.12%; rural area was 1.74%. In 6 months of 2018. The youth unemployment rate (aged 15-24 years) was estimated at 7.1%, of which urban and rural was 10.73%; 5.71%, respectively.

Underemployment rate at working age in Q1 2018 was 1.52; and estimated for Q2 2018 was 1.50%. Generally, for 6 months of 2018, underemployment rate at working age was estimated at 1.51%, of which underemployment rate in urban and rural area was 0.64% and 1.95% (in 6 months of 2017 corresponding figures were 1.73%; 0.85%; 2.15%).

Percentage of employment in the informal economy in non-agricultural activities[28] in Q1 2018 was 56.3%; estimated for Q2 2018 was 56.5%, of which urban and rural area was 48.3% and 63.2%. Generally, for 6 months of 2018, percentage of employment in the informal economy in non-agricultural activities was estimated at 56.4%, of which urban and rural area was 48.1% and 63.2%, respectively. (Corresponding figures in Q1 2017 were 57.2%; 48.8% and 64.3%).

  1. Living standards and social security

Over the last 6 months of 2018, living standards were increasingly improved, especially in rural areas thanks to the results of the Program for building new-style rural areas along with favorable weather condition for agricultural production. Food shortage among farmers witnessed a sharply fall compared to the previous year. In June, the whole country witnessed 3.1 thousand households suffering from food shortage a year on year fall of 80.5%, corresponding to 12.5 thousand persons suffering from food shortage, declined by 80.7%. Generally, for 6 months of 2018, the whole country witnessed 94 thousand households suffering from food shortage a year on year fall of 39.6%, corresponding to 373.9 thousand persons suffering from food shortage, declined by 41.5%. In order to overcome food shortage, from the beginning of the year, all administrative levels, sectors and organizations from central to local level supported these households with 6.9 thousand tons of food.

Social security continued to be paid attention by authorities. According to the preliminary report, the total value of gifts had been given to policy beneficiaries, national devotees and social protection beneficiaries in the first 6 months of 2018 was 3.6 trillion VND.  Besides, there were 21.7 million health insurance cards, free health care books/cards were donated to policy beneficiaries in the whole country.

  1. Education and Training

In the school year 2017-2018, there were 15,241 kindergarten schools nationwide, an increase of 378 schools compared to the previous school year; 28,710 general schools, a decrease of 81 schools, including: 14,937 primary schools, a decrease of 115 schools; 10,091 lower secondary schools, a decrease of 64 schools; 2,398 upper secondary schools, an increase of 7 schools; 848 basic general schools, an increase of 75 schools and 436 lower and upper secondary schools, a rise of 16 schools. The number of kindergarten teachers was 266.3 thousand persons, rose by 6.2% compared to the same period of the previous school year; 853 thousand classroom teachers in general education, reduced by 0.7%, including: 396.6 thousand primary school teachers, a decrease of 0.1%; 306.1 thousand lower secondary school teachers, reducing by 1.6% and 150.3 thousand upper secondary teachers, a reduction of 0.3%. In the school year 2017-2018, there were 4.6 million children attending kindergartens nationwide, a rise of 4.3% against the previous school year; 15.9 million pupils of general education, an increase of 2.6%, including 8 million primary schools pupils, an increase of 3.1%; 5.4 million lower secondary school pupils, a rise of 2.6% and 2.5 million of pupils in upper secondary schools, an increase of 1.3%.

There were 925.8 thousand candidates registered to take the 2018 national graduation exam of upper secondary schools, of which 688.5 thousand candidates registered for admission to universities and colleges, accounted for 74.4% of the total number of registered candidates.

In the school year 2017-2018, there were 235 universities nationwide, including 170 public universities and 65 non-public universities; the number of university lecturers was 75 thousand persons, increased by 3% compared to the previous year, of which the number of lecturers in public universities was 59.3 thousand, an increase of 2.8%. The number of students in universities was 1.7 million persons, a decrease of 4.1% of which 1432.6 thousand students attended public universities, fell by 6% and 263.3 thousand students attended non-public universities, an increase of 7.9%.

Currently, there were over 3,000 vocational education establishments, including 388 colleges, 513 secondary schools and 939 continuing education centers. In the first 6 months of 2018, vocational training enrolled 1.1 million students, reached 48% of the annual plan, of which there were 108 thousand vocational college and secondary students, reached 20%; short-term training and other vocational training programs enrolled 950 thousand people, reached 57% of annual plan.

  1. Epidemic diseases and food poisoning

In June, the whole country witnessed 6.2 thousand cases of hand, foot and mouth disease; 5.2 thousand cases of hemorrhagic fever (1 death); 76 cases of typhoid; 137 cases of viral encephalitis (3 deaths); 4 cases of meningococcal meningitis; 84 cases of whooping cough; 16 cases of human streptococcus suis infection (2 deaths); 14 deaths from rabies. Generally, for 6 months of 2018, the whole country witnessed 16.8 thousand cases of hand, foot and mouth disease; 22.8 thousand cases of hemorrhagic fever (5 death); 291 cases of typhoid; 333 cases of viral encephalitis (5 deaths); 18 cases of meningococcal meningitis; 230 cases of whooping cough; 53 cases of human streptococcus suis infection (5 deaths); 35 deaths from rabies.

As of 18 June 2019, the total number of alive HIV-infected persons over the country was 208.8 thousand persons and the number of cases turned to AIDS was 91.6 thousand persons; the number of persons died of HIV/AIDS nationwide was 97.5 thousand persons.

In June, there were 16 food poisoning cases, poisoned 284 persons, of which one death. Generally, for 6 months of 2018, there were 44 food poisoning cases, poisoned 1,207 persons, of which seven deaths.

  1. Culture and Sport

Cultural activities during the first 6 months of 2018 focused on celebrating Great Holidays, major events of the country.  Professional art shows, popular art performances, folk games were organized from central to local level with diversified content of national cultural identity. Many events were organized on a large scale and receive actively response of many people, contributed to the effective implementation of the country’s political tasks, improved the cultural and spiritual life of the people. Some typical cultural and art shows such as: the festival “Spring colors in all regions of the country” at Viet Nam National Village for Ethnic Culture and Tourism; the show “Spring of love” in Ho Chi Minh City; “Spring Street” in Da Nang and Ho Chi Minh City; Hung Temple Festival; the welcome ceremony to receive the certificate of UNESCO recognizing the art of Bai Choi, Phu Tho “Xoan singing” was the intangible cultural heritage of humanity; Da Nang International Firework Festival 2018, night concert “Love songs during Wartime” in Hanoi, etc.

Mass sports movement took place vigorously throughout the localities with many activities such as organizations of folk games, traditional sports, and a day of Olympic jogging for people’s health 2018, movement of drown prevention by teaching children nationwide how to swim 2018. In 2018, Viet Nam’s high performance sports achieved many outstanding achievements: Viet Nam U23 Football team excelled in winning silver medal at the AFC U-23 Championship, gymnastics team won 5 gold medals, 7 silver medals, 3 bronze medals at the all age-groups World Youth Championship; Pencak Silat team won 3 gold medals, 7 silver medals, 8 bronze medals in the World Young Pencak Silat championship, etc. Generally, for 6 months of 2018, Viet Nam sports team won 172 gold medals, 114 silver medals and 88 bronze medals in international tournaments, of which the world level had 16 gold medals, 21 silver medals and 21 bronze medals.

  1. Traffic accidents

In June (from 16 May to 15 June), there were 1,509 traffic accidents traffic accidents occurred nationwide, including 762 traffic accidents from less serious to more and 747 traffic collisions, causing 627 deaths, 477 injuries and 788 slight injuries. Compared to the same period last year, the number of traffic accidents in June decreased by 3.8% (the number of traffic accidents from less serious to more increased by 2.7% and the number of traffic collisions went down by 9.7%); the number of deaths declined by 2.5%; the number of injuries rose by 18.4% and the number of slight injuries decreased by 16.6%.

Generally, for the first 6 months of 2018, there were 8,999 traffic accidents occurred nationwide, including 4,644 traffic accidents from less serious to more and 4,355 traffic collisions, causing 4,103 deaths, 2,465 injuries and 4,562 slight injuries. Compared to the same period last year, the number of traffic accidents in the first 6 months of this year decreased by 6.2% (traffic accidents from less serious to more decreased by 3.2%; the number of traffic collisions decreased by 9.2%); the number of deaths decreased by 0.7%; the number of injuries dropped 3.3% and the number of slight injuries decreased by 17.8%. Traffic accidents from less serious to more occurred mainly on roads, accounted for 97.6% of the total traffic accidents, caused 4,027 deaths, made up for 98.1% of the total number of deaths due to accidents traffic and 2,435 injuries. On average 49 traffic accidents occurred a day in the first 6 months of 2018 nationwide, including 25 traffic accidents from less serious to more and 24 traffic collisions, caused 23 deaths, 14 injuries and 25 slight injuries.

Remarkably, there were several serious traffic accidents. In 4 consecutive days at the end of May, there were 5 railway traffic accidents, including a serious traffic accidents in Tinh Gia, Thanh Hoa on 24 May, caused 2 deaths, 10 injuries, damaged 150 meters of railway, overturned 6 rail coaches and locomotives; a traffic accident between two cargo trains occurred on 26 May in the area of Nui Thanh railway station in Quang Nam derailed 4 cargo carriages, two locomotives were badly damaged, although there was no casualty but affected state assets and reputation of railway sector. Road traffic also had some serious cases such as a traffic accident occurred in Hanoi – Bac Giang highway on 27 May caused 2 deaths and 6 wounded; a traffic accident on 8 June in Tien Yen, Quang Ninh caused 1 death and 9 injuries; a traffic accident on Ho Chi Minh road section in Dak Nong province on 15 June caused 1 deaths and 4 injuries; a traffic accident also was occurred on Ho Chi Minh Road section in Kon Tum province on 16 June left 3 deaths and 19 injuries.

  1. Damages caused by natural disasters 

According to preliminary reports from local authorities, natural disasters in the first 6 months have[29] caused 33 deaths and missing, 47 injuries; 15 thousand houses collapsed and damaged; nearly 11 thousand hectares of rice and arable crops were damaged. Total loss was estimated at 808 billion VND. Remarkably, heavy rains, flash floods and landslides occurred in the Northern mountainous area from 22 to 26 June, caused 15 deaths, 11 missing and 7 wounded; more than 1.5 thousand houses collapsed, damaged, swept away and flooded; 1.2 thousand hectares of rice and arable crops were damaged; 5.5 thousand of cattle and poultry killed; many highways and provincial roads had been hit by landslide caused traffic congestion, estimated losses of more than 140 billion VND.

Landslide continued to occur in the Mekong Delta. There were 562 locations in the river bank and beach landslided with a total length of 786 km, of which 140 locations at dangerous levels and 55 extremely dangerous points. It was predicted that landslide would be more complicated than the previous year. The Prime Minister agreed to support 1,500 billion VND from 2018 central budget reserve for the Mekong Delta region to handle with extremely dangerous points which affected directly residential areas and essential infrastructure works.

  1. Environment protection, fire and explosion prevention

In June 1,593 cases of violating regulations of environment protection were found, of which 1,492 cases were addressed with total fine of 14.1 billion VND. Generally, for the first 6 months, 7,691 cases of violating regulations of environment protection were found, of which 7,178 cases were addressed with total fine of over 98 billion VND.

In June 2018, there were 329 cases of fire and explosion across the country, caused 4 deaths and 15 wounded, with an estimated damage of over 46.6 billion VND. Generally, for the first 6 months, there were 2,091 cases of fire and explosion across the country, causing 67 deaths and 169 injuries, with an estimated property damage of over 1,200 billion VND.

In general, socio-economic situation in the first 6 months of 2018 continued to witness positive change. The economy achieved a good growth rate, macro-economy was stable and inflation was curbed and maintained at lower level than threshold set by the National Assembly. Agricultural production recorded a clearly recovery. Business environment and conditions continued to improve; the Purchasing Managers Index (PMI) reached a high level again[30]. Consumption was high; exports and international tourist attraction were quite good. Foreign direct investment attraction saw positive aspects. Unemployment rate and underemployment rate tended to decrease. Social security continued to be paid attention by authorities.

However, in addition to the positive aspects, the economy still had shortcomings and challenges: It was still potential risk while inflation could increase higher than the National Assembly’s threshold; the disbursement of public investment progress was lower than planned; manufacturing industries were difficult to maintain a high growth rate during the last months of the year. Protection policies in some countries, especially the increasing US’s protection action, will be a barrier to Viet Nam’s exports. Agricultural products price, weather were complicated and could affect agricultural production and people’s life.

In order to achieve the socio-economic development in 2018, in the coming time, ministries, line-ministries and localities should focus on drastically and synchronously implementing the solutions and missions set out in Resolution No.01/NQ-CP and directing and operating documents of the Government and the Prime Minister, regularly monitor the development of the world and domestic economic situation, closely follow the growth scenario of each sector and locality to have appropriate solutions, promptly deal with difficulties and promote economic production and business development, focusing on the following main contents:

Firstly, continue to navigate monetary policy in the direction of prudence and flexibility, closely in line with fiscal and policy and other macro policies to stabilize macro economy, curb inflation and support growth. To effectively control credit quality, especially consumption credits. To focus on lending in priority areas such as agriculture, rural area, export goods trading, auxiliary industries, and high-tech applied enterprises, small and medium enterprises. Actively plan to absorb cash flows from equitization’s outcomes, divestment of State capital in large enterprises and interest rate adjustment plan of the US to stabilize interest rates and exchange rates.

Secondly, to implement fiscal policy closely, strengthen financial discipline. To promote tax inspection, tighten declaration and refund of value-added tax, take effective measures to prevent losses for transfer pricing, smuggling, trade frauds, collect unpaid tax debts. To closely monitor State budget expenditures, thrift practice and anti-waste, thoroughly save recurrent expenditure, purchasing and meeting. To speed up the disbursement of public investment, of which focus on early completion of projects to enhance production capacity for the economy. To closely monitor developments of construction materials and real estate market, ensure sufficient supply for construction demand.

Thirdly, closely monitor the changes in world and domestic market prices, calculate and implement the roadmap to adjust prices of items managed by the State at a reasonable time to ensure the target inflation curb in 2018. To adjust prices of items managed by the State in the direction of prudence, not to increase the price of many items and services at the same time, recommend not adjusting prices in ending months of the year to avoid affecting the national price index and increase expected inflation. To actively prepare goods sources to meet increasing consuming demand at the end of the year; to strengthen communication in order to limit hoax causing confusion for consumers and market instability.

Fourthly, to strengthen quality management of agricultural materials, monitor food safety and hygiene, detect and prevent timely use of banned substances in agriculture and fisheries. To closely monitor weather conditions to timely adjust production plans, minimize the damage caused by weather, especially in areas frequently hit by natural disasters such as the South Central Coastal areas and Mekong River Delta. To promote connection between production with processing and consumption of products, application of science and technology, especially post-harvest handling and storage technology. To strengthen inspection, supervision and tighten management of fishing grounds; strictly control origin of forest products and seafood exported to European countries. To provide credit support policy in timely manner for shrimp farmers to overcome difficulties due to a sharp decline in shrimp prices.

Fifthly, to continue to create a favorable business environment for business development. To promote the development of manufacturing industries, especially in-depth processing industries, processing agricultural products, auxiliary industries, and consumer goods production. To investigate and supervise the implementation of investment and production and business plans of State-owned corporations and companies; to complete and early operate investment projects in the industry to improve production capacity. To develop and upgrade the production value chain for products such as textiles, footwear, chemicals, food, electronics, etc. contributing to improve the added value and the ability to join global production network.

Sixthly, to enhance tourism promotion, introduce policies to effectively attract international visitors; strictly control the quality of tourism and accommodation services. To promote trade promotion, seeking and expanding the legal export markets for agricultural products. To focus on supporting associations and enterprises to cope with and minimize disadvantages of catfish export to the US and EU markets and US’s decision to impose high import tax on steel products imported from Viet Nam that supposedly originated from China. To have solution to overcome the trade deficit from markets that we signed Free Trade Agreements (FTA).

Seventh, to effectively implement social security policies. To provide ad-hoc assistance to ensure that people get stuck in risks and natural disasters are timely supported to overcome difficulties and stabilize their lives Strengthen environmental protection, ensure traffic order and safety and prevent fire and explosion./.

GENERAL STATISTICS OFFICE


 [1] In April 2018, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) forecasted that global economic growth in 2018 reached 3.9%, an increase of 0.1 percentage points compared to the growth rate of 3.8% in 2017

[2] GDP growth in the first 6 months of 2011, 2012, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, and 2018 was 5.92%, 4.93%, 4.90%, 5.22%, 6.32%, 5.65%, 5.83%, and 7.08%, respectively.

[3] Growth rate of value added in the agriculture, forestry and fishery in the first 6 months of years from 2012 to 2018 was 3.13%, 2.06%, 2.90%, 2.22%, 0.18%, 2.75 %, 3.93%, respectively.

[4] Growth rate of value added of fishery activites in 6 months of 2011-2018 was 3.40 %, 4.85%, 2.34%, 5.89%, 3.30%, 1.25%, 5.08 %, and 6.41 %, respectively.

[5] Growth rate of value added of manufacturing in 6 months of 2011-2018 was: 8.96%; 5.61%; 6.61%; 10%; 10.5%; 10.52%; 13.02%.

[6] Growth rate of value added of the service sector in 6 months of the year from 2012 to 2018 was 8.96%, 5.61%; 6.61%, 10%, 10.5%, 10.52%, and 13,02%, respectively.

7The area of ​​winter-spring paddy in 2018 in Red River Delta decreased by 11.9 thousand hectares compared with the previous winter-spring paddy, of which: nearly 3 thousand hectares of land were recovered and cleared for industrial zones, road construction and mechanical construction, infrastructure of resorts, new urban areas; converted 2.4 thousand hectares to perennial trees, more than 1.7 thousand hectares switched to other annual crops and nearly 1,000 hectares to aquaculture. Area of ​​winter-spring paddy in the Mekong River Delta decreased by 5.6 thousand hectares compared with the winter-spring paddy in 2017, of which: 325 hectares converted to road building, other non-agricultural land, 5.4 thousand hectares converted to other annuals crops 14.2 thousand hectares changed to other perennial trees and 9.2 thousand hectares converted to aquaculture and 3.7 thousand hectares due to quitting crops, and there were 9.9 thousand hectares of other annual crops returned. in terms of paddy cultivation, more than 862 hectares of land were reclaimed and 16.4 thousand hectares of additional paddy were cultivated

[8] In the first 6 months of 2017, the manufacturing increased by 9.7% compared to the same period last year; production and distribution of electricity rose 9%; water supply, waste and sewerage remediation climbed up 5.4 %; mining and quarrying activities decreased by 6.7 %.

[9] Steel production in June 2018 was 8.7 times higher than the same period last year and 8.1 times than the firgure in 6 months of 2018, mainly due to the contribution of Formosa Cooperation.

[10] The main reason was that Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd. focused on producing luxury phones in February and March this year, while production in 2017 mainly was in April and May.

[11] Index of industrial inventory in 6 months of years from 2015 to 2018 was 75.4 %; 70%; 71.1% and 63.4%, respectively.

[12] Source: National business registration information system, Business Registration Management Agency, Ministry of Planning and Investment.

[13] Compared to the same period last year, the number of enterprises increased by 13.6%; the registered capital increased by 19.5%.

[14] In the first 6 months of 2017, the number of newly registered enterprises increased by 12.4% over the same period last year; the registered capital increased by 39.4%; the average registered capital of an enterprise increased by 24%.

[15] The number of enterprises temporarily ceased without registered or awaited for dissolution grew up, because this time, the business registration offices in the whole country was reviewing and standardizing data, eliminating enterprises was/have inactive for a long time.

[16] Corresponding index of the first quarter of 2018: 33% of enterprises rated the business production situation better than the previous quarter; 24.6% of enterprises rated it was difficult and 42.4% of enterprises said that the business production situation was stable.

[17] Corresponding index of the first quarter of 2018: 35.4% of enterprises rated the volume of enterprises increased compared with the previous quarter; 27.2% of enterprises rated production volume downturn and 37.4% of enterprises said it was stable.

[18] Corresponding index of the first quarter of 2018: 30.8% of enterprises have orders higher than the previous quarter; 24.4% of enterprises have orders decreased and 44.8% of enterprises have stable orders.

[19] Trade deficit in May was estimated at 500 million USD.

[20] Of which: the first 6 months saw a trade deficit of 13.9 billion USD from South Korea, going down by 14.1% over the same period last year; trade deficit from China was 14.5 billion USD, going up by 4%.

[21] The increase/decrease rate of CPI in June compared to the previous month in some years as follows: 2012 recuded 0.26%; 2013 rose 0.05%; 2014 rose 0.3%; 2015 rose 0.35%; 2016 increased 0.46%; 2017 fell 0.17%; and 2018 rose 0.61%.

[22] As price of pork increased by 8.12% over the prevous month (caused general CPI to increase 0.34%), at the same time, price of products made of the pork rose.

[23] The price of rice fell 0.5% due to getting pumper havest with plentiful sources in comparison with the previous month and price of export rice showed a slight downward trend due to competition with rice price of Thailand.

[24] Although there was a downward adjustment in price of petroleum on 22/6/2018, the impact of the price increase in the previous month caused the price of petroleum in June 2018 to rise by 2.38% that pushed the general CPI to increase by 0.1%.

[25] Price of electricity rose by 0.86%; price of water increased by 0.38%.

[26] Price of health services increased that caused the CPI of the health service group in 6 months to rise by 25.68% over the same period last year, caused average CPI in 6 months to rise by 0.99%. Price of education services increased by 7.06%, causing average CPI in 6 months to rise 0.37%.

[27] Merchandise export price index/Merchandise import price index.

[28] Employment in the informal economy in non-agricultural activities include those who do not work in agriculture, forestry and fisheries and belong to one of the following three groups: (i) wage earners in the formal sector who are not entitled to enter into a labor contract or to be entered into a labor contract with definite term but not paid compulsory social insurance by employers; family labor in establishments in the formal sector and cooperative members who do not have a compulsory social insurance; (ii) owners of establishments, self-employed workers, wage earners and family labor in establishments in the informal sector; (iii) self-employed workers for self-consumption of households and hired labor in households.

[29] Excluding damage from heavy rain, flash floods and landslides in the Northern mountainous provinces on 22-26 June, 2018.

[30] Viet Nam’s Purchasing Managers Index (PMI) increased from 51.6 points in March 2018, to 52.7 points in April 2018 and reached 53.9 points in May 2018.