Vietnam August trade surplus widens, industrial production contracts

FILE PHOTO: A woman rides a motorcycle as she passes containers at Hai Phong port, Vietnam September 25, 2018. Picture taken September 25, 2018. REUTERS/Kham

HANOI (Reuters) - Vietnam’s trade surplus in August is likely to have widened to $3.5 billion from a $2.8 billion surplus in July, while industrial production in the month contracted 0.6% from a year earlier, government data released on Saturday showed.

Exports in August probably rose 2.5% from a year earlier to $26.5 billion, while imports were likely to stand up 2.8% to $23.0 billion, the General Statistics Office (GSO) said in a statement.

Vietnam typically releases statistics data before the end of the reporting period, and the GSO’s trade data is often subject to significant revision.

For the first eight months of this year, exports probably increased 1.6% from a year earlier to $174.11 billion, while imports fell 2.2% to $162.21 billion, for a trade surplus of $11.9 billion, the GSO said.

The GSO said consumer prices rose 3.18% in the month from a year earlier, adding that average consumer prices in the January-August period rose 3.96% on the year.

Average industrial production index in the first eight months of this year rose 2.2% from a year earlier.

Reporting by Khanh Vu; Editing by Clarence Fernandez