News / Economy

Vietnam Seeks to Step Out of China's Economic Shadow

A vendor transports lychees for sale on the street in Hanoi, June 14, 2007.
A vendor transports lychees for sale on the street in Hanoi, June 14, 2007.

The lychee harvest is in full swing in Vietnam's northern Hai Duong province, but local officials say fewer Chinese traders have come to buy the sweet and juicy fruit this summer due to concerns about anti-China sentiment.

Observers say tensions over a Chinese oil rig in disputed waters of the South China Sea are having a negative impact on the economic ties between the two neighbors.

Pham Duc Tuan, a high-ranking official of Thanh Ha district, told VOA’s Vietnamese service that the move to diversify its trading partners is very important while Hanoi and Beijing continue their standoff at sea, causing every aspect of the bilateral relations to deteriorate.

“It applies not only to lychee, but to other fruits as well.  It is riskier if we rely too much on any market.  If there is something unfavorable, it would have impacts on imports.”

Fruits traditionally grown in the north and exported to China are reportedly piling up in markets in the south, with prices plunging in half as Vietnamese seek to curb their country's dependence on the Chinese market.

To show support for farmers, calls on consumers to purchase local fresh fruits, one of Vietnam’s main exports to China, are inundating social networks.

Vietnamese American economist Alan Phan, who has extensive business experience in both Vietnam and China, said China has dominated Vietnam’s economy, and it is a weapon that Beijing can use to its advantage.  

“It is nearly impossible for Vietnam to be economically free from China.  Its export products over rely on cheap raw materials from China, so it is difficult to switch to other sources.  The incomes of Vietnamese are low, so they prefer inexpensive Chinese goods.”

Vietnamese President Truong Tan Sang was quoted by local media as saying this month that Vietnam should not let itself “depend on any nation in both economics and politics.”

Economists have suggested that tensions over the oil rig could slow Vietnam’s 2014 growth rate.

Beijing’s placement of the drilling platform sparked riots in Vietnam last month, leaving at least two Chinese workers dead and forcing Beijing to carry out mass evacuations of its citizens.

According official statistics, China was Vietnam's largest trading partner with total two-way trade reaching over $50 billion in 2013.

This report was produced in collaboration with the VOA Vietnamese service.

You May Like

Karzai's Legacy: Missed Opportunities?

Afghanistan's president leaves behind a much different nation than the one he inherited, yet his legacy from 13 years in power is getting mixed reviews More

Video Secret Service Chief Under Fire for White House Security Breach

Julia Pierson faces tough questions from lawmakers after recent intrusion at White House, says: 'It is clear that our security plan was not executed properly' More

Frustrated, Liberian Students Want Ebola Fight Role

Thousands have volunteered to go to counties, rural villages to talk to people in their language about deadly virus More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments page of 2
    Next 
by: tom from: Austin
June 28, 2014 1:59 PM
Recently acquired clothing at Wal Mart which was made in RVN. How ironic.

In Response

by: LiveFree from: US
July 02, 2014 12:09 PM
If we check the label before we buy, eventually Walmart will get the message and import from somewhere else.


by: Tim from: Houston
June 27, 2014 7:35 PM
We all need to boycott China's products and stop dealing with this bully. Not only this helps reducing trade deficit with China, you stop financing China's defense to invade others and your country. Don't ever think that this will only happen to others. Xinjiang, Tibet, India, Russian, Mongol, etc .. have clearly show us China's invasion doesn't stop at sea. No one is safe!!!

In Response

by: Tony LE from: Australia
June 29, 2014 4:35 AM
Yes, China's expansion in the future will not be limited to South and East China Seas. Hawaii and US interests would also be at risk.
Buying made-in-China equals financing this expansion!


by: John from: MD
June 27, 2014 11:54 AM
For those who have never eaten a lychee "because they are exotic", this fruit is delicious. I love them, but here in the US they are hard to come unless you live in a sector like CA with a big Asian community, who know what really good things are. It wouldn't be "exotic" if we imported it more and sell it in supermarkets all over the country. Hey, if we get grapes from as far from Chile, what's the problem getting lychees? As far as I know,America had no oranges. They come from ASIA and they don't seem to be "exotic" now, right? Just trade and take that dumb "exotic" tag out of fruits. They can be harvested all over the world if farmers just get into it. Believe me, I would be a #1 lychee customer if they were to be found locally. I love them.

In Response

by: GoodGuy from: US
July 02, 2014 12:04 PM
I think you just found yourself a new business. Congratulation!

In Response

by: Jerry from: Usa
June 29, 2014 2:18 PM
I agree


by: open your eyes VN from: USA
June 27, 2014 11:51 AM
Ok. let me serious. The Vietnamese people and its government need to take action. Vietnam is a great place to grown fruits, vegetables...etc. Why don't they grown their own food in which be all benefit for every living soul there? Importing food(poison) from China is a shame. The Chinese from over 2000 years wanted VietNam as China and it will NEVER change. So china has gotten Vietnam by the Throat. China don't want to help North Vietnam during the Vietnam war. They want to insert their own in the Vietnamese government. And now the government there are like little puppet. The people can't fight the Chinese invader, sadly their leader is corrupted and nothing but a dog of china. Bottom line the Chinese import of fruits consist of chemicals, and once eaten it will harm and kill you eventually. Sadly the vietnamese people know that... but i just don't understand.. why they still eating and consuming poison from China....*sigh

In Response

by: LiveFree from: US
July 02, 2014 12:07 PM
They never help Vietnam. Vietnam fought hard in VN war to unite the country, China wants VN to stay divided. It is easy for them to manage Vietnam that way, isnt it?


by: Trongnguyen from: Garden grove
June 27, 2014 11:28 AM
China going too far steal Pirate the aggressor harm to all World peace . I say to keep World Peace we need to Stop china invade and intrude attack china from all front


by: Vincent Nguyen from: Garden grove
June 27, 2014 11:22 AM
China has no respect to all Nation by invade Vietnam Island In 1974 and another in 1988 and called it their territory now . Call the whole free World to protest china and boycott all china bad Product


by: Karuna from: North America
June 27, 2014 10:07 AM
China has been using its economic might to coerce Vietnam and other ASEAN nations in order to achieve its expansionism ambitions in the East and SCS. China's 9-dash line claims are absurd and have to be contested at the world court. China is cunningly isolating and intimidating a few nations at the time. The end results are the same; all Asian nations within China's territorial claims including Malaysia, Taiwan, Indonesia and Brunei will be dealt with later after The Philippines and Vietnam. If these nations are wise, they should reduce their economic and political dependence with China, trade with other nations and form a strong alliance against China's belligerent and dangerous moves in the region.


by: Bay Area from: USA
June 27, 2014 8:47 AM
China is FAKE, STEAL, ROB, CRUEL, and NO International LAW...The World should Boycott Made in China...
China has a long history of selling shoddy/dangerous/poisonous products to the US. They have virtually no regulation and some of the food and other products sold to the US are contaminated, poisonous, dangerous or just plain bad for you. In supporting this boycott you are also supporting Made in The USA, as well as sending a message that we will not tolerate crappy, dangerous or toxic products imported from China. As long as people keep buying their inferior products, they will keep producing them. Time to vote with your wallets!


by: TacoBueno from: North & South America
June 27, 2014 8:46 AM
Why US, Canada, Europe, South America are focus on China? China is big industrial trade for the world comparing to countries on population. Exotic fruits consume 2X to 3X in China than other country.

In Response

by: andy from: san jose ca
June 27, 2014 11:24 AM
china does not consume goods from Vietnam, she just bought and dump so the Vietnam economy replies on china, Vietnam should seek other source such as Japan, Europe, US to sell exotic fruits


by: Lee Min from: China
June 27, 2014 8:09 AM
China is towering over Vietnam so the country has no easy way to step out of Beijing's shadow! NO WAY!

In Response

by: LiveFree from: US
July 02, 2014 12:03 PM
Where there is a will, there is a way. Never say NO WAY, son.

Comments page of 2
    Next 

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Malaysia Struggles to Stop People Joining Jihadi
X
Mahi Ramakrishnan
September 30, 2014 2:16 PM
Malaysian authorities say militant groups like the so-called "Islamic State" have used social media to entice at least three dozen Malaysian Muslims to fight in what they call "jihad" in Syria and Iraq. As Mahi Ramkrishnan reports from Kuala Lumpur, counterterrorism police are deeply worried about what could happen when these militants return home.
Video

Video Malaysia Struggles to Stop People Joining Jihad

Malaysian authorities say militant groups like the so-called "Islamic State" have used social media to entice at least three dozen Malaysian Muslims to fight in what they call "jihad" in Syria and Iraq. As Mahi Ramkrishnan reports from Kuala Lumpur, counterterrorism police are deeply worried about what could happen when these militants return home.
Video

Video Could US Have Done More to Stop Rise of Islamic State?

President Obama says airstrikes against Islamic State militants in Syria will likely continue for some time because, in his words, "there is a cancer that has grown for too long." So what if President Obama had acted sooner in Syria to arm more-moderate opponents of both the Islamic State and the Syrian government? VOA State Department Correspondent Scott Stearns reports from the United Nations.
Video

Video Treasure Hunters Seek 'Hidden Treasure' in Central Kenya

Could a cave in a small village in central Kenya be the site of buried treasure? A rumor of riches, left behind by colonialists, has some residents dreaming of wealth, while others see it as a dangerous hoax. VOA's Gabe Joselow has the story.
Video

Video Iran's Rouhani Skeptical on Syria Strikes

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani expressed skepticism Friday that U.S.-led airstrikes in Iraq and Syria could crush Islamic State militants. From New York, VOA’s Margaret Besheer reports the president was also hopeful that questions about Iran’s nuclear program could be resolved soon.
Video

Video US House Speaker: Congress Should Debate Authorization Against IS

As wave after wave of U.S. airstrikes target Islamic State militants, the speaker of the Republican-controlled House of Representatives says he would be willing to call Congress back into session to debate a formal, broad authorization for the use of military force. VOA’s Michael Bowman reports from Washington, where legislators left town 10 days ago for a seven-week recess.
Video

Video Ebola Patients Find No Treatment at Sierra Leone Holding Center

At a holding facility in Makeni, central Sierra Leone, dozens of sick people sit on the floor in an empty university building. They wait in filthy conditions. It's a 16-hour drive by ambulance to Kailahun Ebola treatment center. Adam Bailes was there and reports on what he says are some of the worst situations he has seen since the beginning of this Ebola outbreak. And he says it appears case numbers may already be far worse than authorities acknowledge.
Video

Video Identifying Bodies Found in Texas Border Region

Thousands of immigrants have died after crossing the border from Mexico into remote areas of the southwestern United States in recent years. Local officials in south Texas alone have found hundreds of unidentified bodies and buried them in mass graves in local cemeteries. Now an anthropologist and her students at Baylor University have been exhuming bodies and looking for clues to identify them. VOA’s Greg Flakus has more from Waco, Texas.
Video

Video Ebola Robs Liberians of Chance to Say Good-Bye to Loved Ones

In Liberia, where Ebola has killed more than 1,500 people, authorities have worked hard to convince people to allow specialized burial teams to take away dead bodies. But these safety measures, while necessary, make it hard for people to say good bye to their loved ones. VOA's Anne Look reports on the tragedy from Liberia.
Colonel Steve ‘Spiros’ Pisanos left Greece and came to the U.S. to learn to fly. He flew fighters for the Allies in World War II, narrowly escaping death multiple times.Colonel Steve ‘Spiros’ Pisanos left Greece and came to the U.S. to learn to fly. He flew fighters for the Allies in World War II, narrowly escaping death multiple times.

AppleAndroid

World Currencies

EUR
USD
0.7866
JPY
USD
109.25
GBP
USD
0.6139
CAD
USD
1.1120
INR
USD
61.428

Rates may not be current.