Vietnam continues to enjoy trade surplus with Israel

Monday, 2019-10-07 12:09:31
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Processing cashew nuts for exports.
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NDO/VNA – The two-way trade between Vietnam and Israel was estimated at US$760 million in the first three quarters of this year with Vietnam continuing to enjoy a trade surplus of US$440 million, according to a Vietnamese official.

During the period, Vietnam’s exports to Israel exceeded US$600 million while imports totalled around US$160 million, said Vietnamese Trade Counsellor to Israel Le Thai Hoa.

The two countries’ bilateral trade stood at US$677 million in the first eight months of the year, a slight decrease from a year earlier. The dip was largely owing to political uncertainty and security tension in Israel which have sparked concerns among Vietnamese exporters, plus the Middle East country has set tighter food safety requirements, Hoa said.

Vietnam’s imports from Israel also plunged because of significant declines in imports of computers and electronic parts, machinery and tools, and fertilisers, he added.

Vietnam’s exports to Israel are forecast to amount over US$800 million in 2019 while imports will be worth about US$250 million.

The trade structures of Vietnam and Israel are basically complementary as their export items do not directly compete each other, according to the trade counsellor. He noted that the goods Israel import are also Vietnam’s key export items.

More and more Israeli firms have shown interest in directly importing food and foodstuff, such as cashew nut, seafood, beverage, textile and garment, footwear, consumer goods, processed and dried fruits, from Vietnam.

Notably, Vietnam’s footwear shipments to Israel rose by 27.3% during January – August. Vietnamese fragrant rice and frozen shrimp continued to maintain a strong foothold in the Israeli market, Hoa noted.

In 2018, the bilateral trade surpassed US$1.2 billion last year as many of Vietnam’s staples gained footholds in the Israeli market.

A bilateral free trade agreement is under negotiation and is expected to be inked shortly, in hope of lifting two-way trade to US$3 billion.

Israel is currently among Vietnam’s top partners in the Middle East in terms of economic and science-technology cooperation.