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January 1, 2003

Vietnam reports growth of 7% in 2002

(Associated Press) - Vietnam's economy grew 7 percent in 2002 from a year earlier, the government said Tuesday.

The growth in Vietnam's gross domestic product fell short of the government's 7.3 percent target but was higher than the 6.9 percent growth in 2001, the General Statistical Office said.

Vietnam has set a growth target of 7 percent to 7.5 percent for 2003.

Industrial production and construction grew 9.4 percent, while agriculture, forestry and seafood expanded 4.1 percent and the service sector saw an increase of 6.5 percent, the office said.

Vietnam saw its trade deficit grow to $2.77 billion, with exports worth $16.53 billion and imports of $19.3 billion, the office said. Export values increased about 10 percent against last year.

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