On November 19, the UK’s Globaldata.com affirmed that Vietnam is one of a few countries to have controlled the pandemic to a certain degree, with a low number of infections and fatalities. The World Bank also forecast that Vietnam’s GDP would grow 2.8 percent this year and 6.8 percent next.
UK newswire bbc.co.uk also hailed the country for mitigating the economic damage caused by the pandemic and being the only country in the region on track to post growth in 2020.
At an economic forum in Ho Chi Minh City (Photo: VNA)
Though Vietnam lacks the health infrastructure of wealthier countries, it has been widely praised for its public health measures, which quickly brought COVID-19 under control. It was quick to develop testing kits and used a combination of strategic testing and aggressive contact tracing to help control numbers, it said.
The country’s once-thriving tourism sector has taken a particularly heavy hit but the country has so far avoided the worst economic effects of the pandemic.
The newspaper also quoted VinaCapital’s chief economist Michael Kokalari as saying that people are buying new laptops or new office furniture, for work and for spending more time at home. A lot of these products are made in Vietnam.
The pandemic has also prompted more companies to consider manufacturing in Vietnam because of the need to diversify supply chains. “Companies thought they had a global supply chain, but when COVID-19 arrived they found they only had a China supply chain and couldn’t produce,” Kokalari said.
He added that Vietnam’s exports to the US increased 23 percent in the first three quarters compared to the same period of 2019, with electronics exports up 26 percent.
The International Monetary Fund (IMF) also predicted that Vietnam’s economy would grow 2.4 percent this year thanks to decisive steps to contain the health and economic fallout from the pandemic. It forecasts a strong economic recovery in 2021, with growth projected to strengthen to 6.5 percent “as the normalisation of domestic and foreign economic activity continues.”
Meanwhile, Malaysia’s malaymail.com quoted chief Asia-Pacific economist Steve Cochrane as saying that, as of September, Vietnam together with regional states such as Singapore, Taiwan (China), Malaysia, and New Zealand had each reported year-on-year growth.
Overall, Cochrane said the baseline economic outlook called for growth across the entire Asia-Pacific region in 2021, with the fastest growth being in China, Vietnam, and Hong Kong (China).
The UK’s proactiveinvestors.co.uk, meanwhile, quoted the Vietnam Holding Fund as saying it anticipates that the country’s economy will return to growth above 6 percent next year given its “multiple engines of growth.”
The fund said the country’s resiliency during the pandemic “helped raise its profile as a major trade partner” and he expects trade relations between the country and other nations to “gain further momentum”./.