Academic journal article Southeast Asian Affairs

"Reading the Books": Economic Data and the Policy Record

Academic journal article Southeast Asian Affairs

"Reading the Books": Economic Data and the Policy Record

Article excerpt

Since the early 1990s the quantity, and also the quality, of data available on the Vietnamese economy has greatly improved. This article draws mainly upon the following sources:

The basic "book" on the Vietnamese economy, the Statistical Yearbook (Nien giam Thong ke [NGTK] ). However, "internal" documents that also track economic changes are unavailable to the public.

Reports from the four main multilateral donors: the ADB, the World Bank, the International Monetary Fund (IMF), and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP). All these are available on the respective websites. There are probably "internal" documents, but again these are unobtainable. In general, there is little of the normal "number-crunching" and economic monitoring from these agencies. The conjunctural analyses are somewhat perfunctory.3

Vietnamese press reports.4 For a while now Vietnamese economic journalists, publishing in papers such as the Vietnam Economic Times , have provided an often puckish series of views into economic change and policy.

The Official Gazette (the Cong ba o). …

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