HANOI - Vietnam reported that its economy grew 6.68 percent in 2015, the fastest pace in five years, helped by an expanding industrial sector and record foreign direct investment.
The annual growth rate exceeds a 6.55 percent forecast by Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung early this month and the official target of 6.2 percent, the government said on Saturday.
In the fourth quarter, gross domestic product (GDP) increased 7.01 percent from a year earlier, accelerating from 6.87 percent in July-September to be the year's best quarter, the General Statistics Office (GSO) said in a report.
The Southeast Asian nation's growth rate has been rising every year since 2012 as the country made reforms after being on the brink of a crisis after a property bubble burst and bad debts soared to reach 17.5 percent of total loans.
The 2015 rate "is an achievement of a five-year period but not a result of efforts of a single year," Nguyen Bich Lam, GSO head, told a media conference.
The GSO said growth has been supported by 9.4 annual percent growth in manufacturing and expansion of 10.8 percent, the highest in five years, for construction.
As of Dec. 15, actual foreign direct investment (FDI) this year was $14.5 billion, or 17.4 percent above the year-earlier figure.