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Vietnam Q1 garment and textile exports climb

  • Vietnam's garment and textile industry registered export growth of 15.4% in Q1.

  • Exports to Japan and China were up 26.6% and 25.6%, respectively.

Vietnam's garment and textile industry registered export growth of 15.4% in the first quarter to reach US$7.82bn, new figures show, with Japan representing its largest market.

Exports to Japan and China were up 26.6% and 25.6% in the first three months of 2018, respectively, according to figures from the Vietnam National Textile and Garment Group (Vinatex). The export of yarn to the Chinese market, together with Vietnam joining the Comprehensive and Progressive Pacific Partnership (CPTPP), has brought positive results for Vietnam's textile and garment exports.

Korea is the third largest market for Vietnam, with textile and garment exports up 22.3% in the quarter. Exports to the US grew 13.2% year-on-year.

Notably, Vietnam's exports of textiles and garments to other markets were boosted in the first quarter, with increasing exports to Canada and the Russian Federation.

Looking to the remainder of 2018, Vinatex says the US trade war with China is one of the main factors affecting the global textile trade picture in 2018.

"The countries that are directly competing with China in the US market will benefit," Vinatex says, including neighbouring partner Mexico.

It adds: "Evidence shows that imports of textiles from Mexico have been restored in the first quarter of 2018. In addition, as China's textile exports are threatened, it does not rule out the possibility that the Chinese government will step-up production rotation to neighbouring countries to take advantage of cost-competitive labour, commercial expenses."

Vietnam is widely expected to be one of the main beneficiaries of the revised CPTPP trade pact, which was signed by the 11 remaining countries of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) deal early in March.

Vinatex says it will be an opportunity for Vietnam to boost exports to non-traditional markets such as Canada and Australia.

"If Vietnam prepares well for production capacity…works with clients to find solutions to meet the origin requirements of the CPTPP, establishing CPTPP in the near future will open up many opportunities for our businesses."

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