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Vietnam’s Economy Expands by 6.8% in 2019, World Bank Says

In a press conference held Tuesday, World Bank officials said Vietnam’s GDP has expanded by 6.8% in 2019, while public debt has fallen by almost 8% since 2016.

Among those speaking at the press conference was Ousmane Dione, World Bank Country Director for Vietnam, who said that despite Vietnam’s ongoing economic gains, reform remains necessary to realize the potential of capital markets.

“Addressing the financing constraints of firms should receive the greatest attention from policymakers if Vietnam wants to continue on its trajectory of rapid and inclusive growth and reach high-income status in the coming decades,” Dione said.

Dione made the announcements as part of the World Bank’s release of 'Taking Stock,' a report providing analysis and projections on Vietnam’s economic growth, which analysts say is remarkable amid the general decline of global economies.

Dione suggested that one of the main barriers to financial growth in Vietnam is access to credit and that, while the figures appear promising, export growth has actually declined, from 21% to 8% from 2017 to 2019.

Vietnam benefits, however, from a large overseas workforce. According to research by Vietnamese bank BIDV, overseas remittances from Vietnamese surged in 2019, with remittances from overseas workers in 2019 expected to hit US$16.7 billion.

In May 2019, Singapore-based DBS Bank said in a report that Vietnam's economy could overtake Singapore’s within ten years. What’s more, according to a report released in June by the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales, Vietnam is the fastest-growing economy in Southeast Asia.