Investment opportunities arise in Thua Thien-Hue

October 06, 2022 | 09:30
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Vietnam’s central province of Thua Thien-Hue is taking action to pick up a possible new wave of investment. Nguyen Dai Vui, director of the provincial Department of Planning and Investment, talked to VIR’s Bich Thuy about future funding orientations and how to attract more economic interest in the province.

Businesses and investors have been promoting their plans in Vietnam since the world reopened earlier in the year. What have been some highlights in the province’s business and investment attraction in that time?

Investment opportunities arise in Thua Thien-Hue
Nguyen Dai Vui, director of Thua Thien-Hue Department of Planning and Investment

Thua Thien-Hue has met and worked with a number of domestic and international investors. Over the past six months, the province has worked with Sovico, Sunshine, Hoa Phat, Tan A Dai Thanh, Danh Khoi, Hung Thinh, and Alphanam, as well as foreign businesses such as AEON, AGR, SermSang, and others.

The province successfully held a conference in April on defining the future of green economic growth, where the American Chamber of Commerce in Vietnam (AmCham) signed a commitment to support the province in fields like energy, agriculture, tourism, and the environment.

Consequently, the province’s investment and business attraction has brought about positive results, including 27 new projects licensed in the first half of the year with total investment of around $478 million, and many big projects getting approval. Moreover, 16 projects in the province were kicked off, while eight others were put into operation.

During the period, Thua Thien-Hue set up four inter-sector working groups led by the chairman and vice chairs of the provincial People’s Committee to overview business activities and fast-track project development, as part of its efforts to further improve the business climate and increase attraction.

We believe that with the four working groups, the progress of projects will be further fast-tracked so that they can be put into operation on schedule, thus creating positive changes in the province’s investment attraction.

In order to entice new investment, what has the province been doing to increase its attractiveness?

The province carries out investment promotion programmes annually. In 2022, the programme covers many activities. They include studying, analysing, and assessing market demands; and investment trends at home and abroad for building investment promotion scenarios with appropriate specific plans and actions for areas and economic zones (EZs) and industrial zones (IZs).

We built a list of projects that require investment and make regular updates. There is also an information system and database for investment promotion activities such as a digital map of projects in the province to help investors better approach them, and communication campaigns to introduce the local business environment.

The province also pays attention to domestic and international cooperation in investment promotion. For instance, we collaborated with the Consulate General of Japan to host business and investment promotion events in Japan. We have organised promotion events in logistics at Chan May Lang Co EZ, and collaborated with the AmCham and its equivalents from Europe and Japan to host similar events.

The province now prioritises investments in An Van Duong’s new residential area and those in various districts. For the Chan May Lang Co EZ and other IZs, the list of such projects is available as part of the province’s list of projects calling for investment in 2021-2022, with new ones to be updated regularly.

The other prioritised projects are in development of concentrated IT areas, specialised medical centres, and training centres, making them key industries in the upcoming time, as well as others related to IP infrastructure; high-tech agriculture; social security; and development of night economy models to attract tourists such as food courts, walking streets, exhibition areas, and more to create added value for the local economy.

According to statistics, investment in Thua Thien-Hue remains lower than expected. What can be done to turn this around?

Through the pandemic, the province made strong efforts in prevention and control, as well as in investment attraction, and we made some encouraging results. We granted new investment licenses for 15 foreign-invested projects totalling $424.7 million in 2020-2022, including some major foreign-invested ones such as the AEON Mall Hue and a Chinese transformer production project.

In the first nine months of 2022, the province granted investment licenses to five foreign-invested projects with total investment of $237.17 million. While the number of licensed projects in 2020-2022 was much fewer than that in 2016-2019, the period saw more higher-value projects. The province has attracted an accumulated 116 foreign-invested projects, totalling $4.33 billion. Last year, it ranked 24th among all localities.

The province will continue to improve the business climate and innovate its investment promotion. Accordingly, it now diversifies investment promotion activities by hosting both in-person and online events, and those abroad in Thailand, South Korea, and Singapore.

Thua Thien-Hue is also focusing on human resource training, especially in technical industries, technology, law, and banking and finance. Foreign investment attraction will give priority to high-tech industries, and those with advanced technology, while promoting foreign investment in processing and manufacturing for exports for sectors with local advantages.

Our targeted markets of foreign investment are those that have expertise in technology, source technology, leaders in supply chains, and members of bilateral and multilateral free trade agreements with Vietnam such as the US, Japan, South Korea, the EU, Singapore, Thailand, and others.

Our prioritised projects will be IP infrastructure, investments in logistics and seaports, renewable energy, entertainment areas, and eco-tourist sites.

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By Bich Thuy

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