Vietnam forecasts 6.7% economic growth in 2018


Hanoi • Vietnam is confident it will meet its goal of 6.7% economic growth this year, and forecasts the same rate of expansion in 2018.

Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc gave these projections in a speech at the National Assembly’s opening session in Hanoi yesterday: 2018 gross domestic product growth to be at 6.5% to 6.7%; inflation 4%; and exports 7% to 8%.

Vietnam is poised to remain among the world’s fastest-growing economies, as new factories open and foreign direct investment rises. The central bank in July cut its benchmark interest rate for the first time in three years, giving the economy another boost.

The Asian Development Bank predicted growth of more than 6% this year and next.

The government will lower banks’ lending rates and ensure fund availability for loans to companies while controlling credit quality, Nguyen told lawmakers.

Authorities will also tighten control of imports to narrow the trade deficit while boosting domestic sales, he said.

The government also “needs to ensure it can control inflation and continue to improve the investment climate for businesses,” said Vu Hong Thanh, the head of the National Assembly’s Economic Committee.

Officials also need to avoid risks such as fuelling a bubble in the stock and property markets and must quicken restructuring of state companies, he said.