Fun facts to know about Viet Nam’s trade

2 March 2018
ITC News
Viet Nam’s export continues to expand, but what are the country’s most notable contributions to global trade?

Viet Nam has seen rapid growth in foreign trade since state controls were relaxed in the 1990s. Today, several of its main export destinations are found close to home, among other members of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN).

In 2016 the main destination for Vietnamese products in the ASEAN region was Malaysia, which imported an estimated $4.54 billion worth of goods. Thailand came second with $4.45 billion worth of imports from Viet Nam, followed by Indonesia ($3.23 billion) and Singapore ($3.01 billion).

The main import from Viet Nam for the four ASEAN countries are mobile phones. In fact, Viet Nam is the world’s second biggest exporter of mobile phones after China.

However, Viet Nam is the world’s biggest importer of fresh and dried cashew nuts in shell, with an estimated value of $1.33 billion, mostly imported from its trading partners in Africa.

But trade goes both ways: in 2016 Viet Nam exports to Zambia grew to $45 million in 2016, which represents a remarkable 101% growth year-on-year.

Viet Nam’s perhaps best-kept trade secret is that it is the world’s second biggest exporter of coffee. Only surpassed by Brazil, Viet Nam in 2016 exported coffee worth an estimated $3.38 billion.

According to Export Potential Map, Viet Nam is currently ranked 21st in terms of countries with the highest export potential and it is the fourth country in ASEAN when looking at the amount of untapped export potential. Apparel and electronic equipment are a few sectors with interesting unexplored potential and when looking at product diversification opportunities, beans and vanilla offer interesting opportunities, too.

Explore more data on exports and imports, visit and

Explore more export potential, visit