The Vietnam Leather and Footwear Association reports that Vietnam exported footwear worth US$1.35 billion in the first seven months of this year, a year-on-year increase of 23.5%, according to the Vietnamese News Agency. The Association noted that the increase in exports was partly due to an increase in the number of orders received by Vietnamese factories during the SARS outbreak in China. Vietnam expects to export footwear worth US$2.1-2.2 billion this year as a whole.