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US imports from China shrink 13 per cent, while Vietnam shipments surge

By Yana Berman

Vietnam becomes a beneficiary of the US-China trade war

Vietnam is taking advantage of the US-China trade war, as US imports from the country grew 34.8 per cent year-on-year in the first nine months of 2019.

According to an IHS Markit report cited by CNBC, in 2018 the overall growth of US imports from Vietnam was 5.8 per cent.

IHS Markit’s associate director Michael Ryan wrote that the fastest growing exports for the south Asian countries were computers, telephone equipment and other machinery.

Meanwhile, US imports from mainland China have shrunk 13.4 per cent year-on-year in the same period. Additional tariffs imposed by Washington and Beijing were the main reasons for the decline.

As the trade war continues, some major companies are considering moving their production capacities out of China to avoid additional tariffs and Vietnam could be one of the most attractive directions.

For instance, Apple is weighing up the possibility of producing its smartphones in Vietnam and India.

Easing of the US-China trade war could come soon as the two countries are expected to sign phase one of the trade deal before Christmas. Beijing and Washington have already held a “constructive” phone call on the deal.

However, Trump’s repeated threats to raise tariffs on Chinese goods keeps major economies in tension.

FURTHER READING: Markets fall as Trump again threatens China tariff hike

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