Haiphong lifts sustainability footprint with eco-IP model

October 29, 2021 | 09:00
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The northern port city of Haiphong is calling for more investment into its eco-industrial zones, with investors growing more aware of sustainable development.
technology leading to new eco industrial concepts
DEEP C is a symbol of eco-industrial advances currently taking place across the country

According to Haiphong Economic Zones Management Authority, the city’s industrial zones (IZs) and economic zones (EZs) contribute about 80 per cent to its export turnover and 70 per cent of the total industrial production value.

Regarding the development orientation of Haiphong’s IZs and EZs, Chairman of Haiphong People’s Committee Nguyen Van Tung said, “Haiphong has been driving the development of sustainable IZs, especially ecological ones, enhancing its competitive advantages in attracting investment and developing a sustainable environment.”

Since Vietnam has yet to deploy its first eco-industrial park (eco-IP), Haiphong has been communicating with its sister city in Japan to implement a green IP development model. The city also applied to join such a programme launched by the Ministry of Planning and Investment (MPI) and the United Nations Industrial Development Organization.

As a result, DEEP C Industrial Zones were approved by the MPI as one of the pilot zones to transform into an eco-IP model.

Currently, there are two IZs that aim to transform themselves into eco-IPs in Haiphong, DEEP C (540 hectares) and Nam Cau Kien (nearly 270ha). These eco-IPs will account for more than 16.5 per cent of the nearly 5,000ha in Haiphong’s 12 IZs.

Melissa Slabbaert, head of the Sustainable Development Department of DEEP C Industrial Zones, said that tenants at DEEP C can benefit from and resonate with sustainability values in fields like chemicals, firefighting, Internet of Things, rooftop solar energy, and road construction from plastic waste.

DEEP C will continue promoting renewable energy generation, mainly solar and wind. By 2025, DEEP C expects to supply 50 per cent of the power demand in its zones from renewable energies.

Haiphong has been an attractive destination for domestic and foreign investors alike. Its flourishing construction scene for high-quality IZs and EZs adds to its appeal and promises to place the province even higher on foreign investors’ agendas.

The city is now home to 570 investment projects, including more than 400 with foreign participation, offering jobs for about 160,000 workers, including 4,500 overseas ones.

Data from Savills Vietnam in 2020 shows that the occupancy rate of Haiphong’s IZs and EZs hit 73 per cent with rental prices reaching $96 per square metre per lease cycle, up 3.2 per cent compared to 2019. Although rents had been rising, more investment has been pouring into the city.

“The market excitement and the sudden demand increase for industrial land can be explained by better development of infrastructure and accessibility to new locations, roads, piers, and airports,” Matthew Powell, director of Savills Hanoi, said.

Currently, Haiphong’s IZs and EZs are backed with convenient logistics locations, good infrastructure, and many synchronous utilities to serve investors. It has been forecast that foreign investment into Haiphong’s IZs and EZs may reach about $5 billion in the near future.

Of this, Sao Do Group registered $1 billion in Nam Dinh Vu IP; VSIP Haiphong Co., Ltd. registered $1-1.5 billion; and Saigon-Haiphong JSC registered $1 billion in Trang Due IP.

According to Haiphong’s development strategy by 2025, the city will develop 15 more IZs, aiming to attract an additional $12-15 billion in investment capital. Following such ambitious goals, the development of eco-IPs will be one of the key points to ramp up Haiphong’s appeal to foreign investors.

By Anh Duc

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