Binh Thuan Province: Proactive in Integration and Development

3:57:50 PM | 27/5/2010

Binh Thuan, a province of the key economic region in Central Vietnam is engaging actively in economic development and integration. On the occasion of the ASEAN Summit in Vietnam and the conclusion of the province’s five-year plan, Vietnam Business Forum interviewed Mr. Huynh Tan Thanh, Chairman of Binh Thuan People’s Committee.
Can you describe the socio-economic achievements of the province in the five-year plan of 2006-2010?         
Binh Thuan has implemented the five-year plan (2006-2010) through both difficult and favourable conditions. With guidance and support from the central government and the great efforts of the local people and authorities, we have made important progress in several fields. Average GDP growth is 12.8 % a year with 6.5 % in agriculture-forestry-fisheries, 15.8 % in industry-construction and 15.4 % in service. GDP per capita in 2010 is estimated at US$1,090 with comparative advances in each product and area. Meanwhile, trade and service are developing vigorously to meet increasing demand of the market and society.
The export value increased 13.12 per cent a year. Socio-economic infrastructure has been upgraded for higher efficiency and more resources have been mobilized, with some VND45,500 billion in five years including VND32,000 for investment (71.96 %). Budget revenue in five years was VND22,250 billion with average growth rate of 14.4 % a year. Meanwhile GNP was VND9,270 billion, up by 16.1 % a year. Progress has also been recorded in culture and social welfare. The people’s living conditions have been improved and poverty reduced to 4 %. Meanwhile, 100 % of towns and wards reached the national criteria in health service and education for school-age children. The province generates some 23,000 jobs a year, reducing the workforce engaged in agriculture-forestry-fisheries to 52.2 % in 2010.
Could you elaborate further on key projects of the central government and development plan of the province?
The province is implementing some key projects of the central government in areas such as the job programme, water supply, rural environment, family planning, sea-based economy, poverty reduction, education and training, food safety, disease prevention, planting five million hectares of forest, and upgrading schools, hospitals and rural roads.
As a result, by 2020 Binh Thuan will become a province of industry and service with modern socio-economic infrastructure connections. Average GDP growth rate in 2011-2015 will be 13-14.3 % a year and 12-12.8 % in 2016-2020. GDP per capita in 2015 will be 1.78 times that of 2010 and in 2020 will be 1.7 times of 2015. Budget revenue (excluding oil and gas) will be 16-17 % more than GDP of 2011-2015. The annual export value in the periods of 2011-2015 and 2011-2020 is expected to averagely increase by 16-17 % and 17-18 %.
Binh Thuan also plans to develop specialized industries with priority for high technology and added value, focusing on energy (thermal, hydro and wind), frozen and processed aquatic products, minerals and building materials, mechanics, electronics, building and repair ships and fishing boats, shipping, garment, footwear, agriculture and forestry processing, and traditional handicraft.  By 2020 there will be 11 industrial zones in the province.        
 Agriculture-forestry-fisheries will be guided toward sustainable development, with cash crops meeting market demand and rural development. Offshore fishing will be developed together with aquaculture, sustainably exploiting aquatic resources. Agriculture will be diversified with new strains and species and combined with processing industries for market consumption. Long-term tree crops will be developed such as cashew, rubber, coffee and dragon fruit, together with raising cows, goats and pigs.
Binh Thuan will promote both foreign and domestic tourism. It will diversify tourist products, developing culture, environment, recreation and sport tourism, along with conferences. The province will promote Binh Thuan tourism in the world market, upgrade infrastructure and services and mobilize all resources for tourism development, especially transport, commerce, import-export, financing, banking, insurance, consulting, telecom, technology transfer and technical support for agriculture and fisheries.
The province will also focus on developing the pre-school network, and training to upgrade the health service.         
How can Binh Thuan develop its comparative advantages in economic development?
In 2010, Binh Thuan focuses on developing industry, tourism, agriculture and rural development. In the coming years, the province will continue those efforts to maximize its advantages in all sectors.
First of all, the province will accelerate infrastructure construction for Phase 2 of Phan Thiet industrial zone, and Ham Kien industrial zones I and II, then call for investment in Son My I, Tan Duc and Tuy Phong industrial zones, as well as infrastructure for Vinh Tan thermal power station. Preparation will also be made for Dan Sach and Song Luy hydro power projects. In conjunction with Vietnam coal and minerals group, the province will build Ke Ga deep-water sea port and wind power project. The province will also attract investments in food processing projects, especially specialized products and clean technology of the province.
In addition, the province will improve food safety, waste treatment and water supply, promote human resources development for tourism, develop tourism and encourage high quality projects. Cultural and sport events will promote Binh Thuan tourism.
In agriculture, the province will promote intensive cultivation and increase crops in the planned area of 44,000 hectares with special strains. Dragon fruit quality will be improved with at least 5,000 hectares receiving VietGap certificates. Rubber, cotton, pepper and sugar cane will be planted in areas close to processing and storage facilities, while vegetables will be planted close to urban areas. The province encourages large-scale animal husbandry in combination with slaughter houses. Forestry will be promoted with special focus on developing rubber plantation.
Offshore fishing will be promoted with sea-board logistics, while coastline fishing will be gradually transformed into other economic activities. Aquaculture will be promoted with high quality and technology for sea, brackish and fresh waters.
Thu Hoa