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For Vietnam, Trade War a Sword That Cuts Both Ways

For Vietnam, Trade War a Sword That Cuts Both Ways

HO CHI MINH CITY, VIETNAM —
Look at a list of the top four countries in Asia that could be hurt as China’s economy slows down and its ongoing trade war with the United States heats up.

Then look at a list of the top four countries in Asia that stand to benefit from these tensions and from the diversion of investment away from China.

There is only one nation that shows up on both lists: Vietnam.

That is right. Vietnam would be both one of the biggest trade winners and one of the biggest trade losers, depending on how much the current disruptions to global commerce further intensify. Moody’s Investors Services has studied 23 countries all across the Asia Pacific and found that the four most likely to gain from the trade frictions are Malaysia, Taiwan, Thailand and Vietnam.

And it found that the four most likely to suffer negative consequences are Hong Kong, Mongolia, Singapore and, again, Vietnam.

That makes the trade war between China and the United States a “dao hai luoi” or a sword that cuts both ways for Vietnam.