Vietnam Q1 GDP growth slows as weak demand hits exports By Reuters


© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: Employees work at a shoe factory for export in Hanoi, Vietnam December 29, 2020. REUTERS/Kham/File Photo

HANOI (Reuters) – Vietnam’s economic growth in the first quarter slowed to 3.32% from an expansion of 5.05% in the same period last year, government data released on Wednesday showed, as its exports fell sharply.

The Southeast Asian country, a regional manufacturing hub, reported a 11.9% year-on-year fall in its exports in the January-March period due to weakening global demand.

Shipments of smartphones, the country’s largest export earner, fell 15% to $13 billion in the first quarter, while electronics shipments fell 10.9%, the General Statistics Office (GSO) said in a report.

Industrial production in the first quarter fell 2.3% from a year earlier, while total domestic retail sales of goods and services rose 13.9%, the GSO said.

Consumer prices in March fell 0.23% from February, the GSO said. Average consumer prices in the first quarter rose 4.18% from a year earlier.

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