Phu Tho Exerting All Resources for Sustainable Development

5:15:18 PM | 3/1/2013

Phu Tho has so far adopted a number of measures to improve its investment and business environment and support enterprises to overcome difficulties. With three breakthrough stages of critical infrastructure investment, human resource training and tourism development, the province is trying to lay the platform for Phu Tho to develop into an industrialised province by 2020. The Vietnam Business Forum interviewed Mr Hoang Dan Mac, Chairman of Phu Tho Provincial People's Committee, on these issues. Tran Trang and Ngo San report.
Despite being impacted by the global economic downturn, Phu Tho province has still managed to achieve positive socioeconomic development results in the past years. How do you assess those achievements?
Phu Tho is located at the northern gateway to the national capital of Hanoi and is about 50 km from Noi Bai International Airport. Its roads, railways and waterways connect Hanoi with northern mountainous provinces. The province also lies on the North-South Economic Corridor. The province is defined by the Central Government as the centre of science, technology, education, training, health, culture, sports and tourism in northern midland and mountainous area. The provincial capital of Viet Tri City is the centre of politics, economy, culture and society of the province and is being built into the “city of return-to-origin festivals.” With such a favourable geographical location, Phu Tho gathers sufficient favourable conditions for economic development and trade exchange with other localities and with the world.
Phu Tho has made important achievements in many fields over the past years. 15 years after provincial reestablishment, Phu Tho has always kept annual growth rate rising. The average GDP growth rate was over 10 per cent a year in the 2005-2011 period. The economic structure is positively shifted.
This overall development is largely contributed to rapid industrial development. The production capacity of advantageous industries like cement, fertiliser, paper, wine, beer and tea is expanding. Some new, high-tech products are being formed. The diversification and quality of industrial products enhance their competitiveness on the market. Some industrial zones play an important role in attracting investment projects in the province, including Thuy Van, Trung Ha, Bach Hac, and Dong Lang industrial zones.
In addition, trade and service expands 15 per cent a year on average. Technological level and service quality are focused. Medical, education and vocational training services are gradually promoted to better serve its driving role in the region. Trade, transportation, warehousing, banking and credit, postal and telecommunications services are synchronously developed and modernised. Tourism infrastructure is invested. The province has invested in tourism infrastructure construction for Hung Temple, Mau Au Co Temple, Xuan Son National Park, Thanh Thuy Resort, Van Lang tourist site and is preparing to embark construction on Dream City - a complex of ecological residential, tourism and sport in Tam Nong. The province continues hosting the annual Hung King Anniversary.
Economic development enables Phu Tho to make more investments in infrastructure development. As of 2012, the province has asphalted 90 per cent of provincial roads, and concreted 70 per cent of district roads and 30 per cent of countryside roads. It put into use Ha Hoa and Ngoc Thap bridges. It is also actively working with central ministries and agencies to accelerate the deployment of such projects as Noi Bai - Lao Cai Highway, Ho Chi Minh Road, bridges over Red, Lo and Da rivers, upgraded National Road 2 (Vinh Yen - Viet Tri section), Hanoi - Lao Cai railway, Viet Tri - Hanoi waterway and Viet Tri - Tuyen Quang waterway.
What solutions will Phu Tho take in the near future to realise the target of becoming an industrialised province by 2020?
In the 2011 - 2015 period, the province is determined to complete its development targets, featuring average annual GDP growth of 12 - 13 per cent. By 2015, GDP per capita will reach US$1,500 - 1,600; exports will rise 13 per cent annually to top US$600 - 650 million in 2015; and total social investment will amount at VND67 - 68 trillion. By 2015, industry and construction will account for 41 - 42 per cent of the provincial GDP; services will make up 39 - 40 per cent; and agriculture and forestry will contribute 18 - 19 per cent.
To achieve these objectives, the province will implement comprehensive solutions in the coming time. Firstly, Phu Tho will continue perfecting its mechanisms and policies to promote socio-economic development, improve the investment and business environment; develop and complete infrastructure in industrial zones to collect attract investors with advanced and clean technologies; support businesses to train personnel and transfer technology.
Phu Tho will harmoniously develop economy and society in localities and ensure the close link between urban and rural areas; give priority to key economic centres of Viet Tri City, Phu Tho town, Lam Thao district, Phu Ninh district, and Tam Nong district while facilitating poorer localities to catch up with overall development process.
As regards sector structure, the province prioritises industrial and construction development in order to expand production scale and improve quality, competitiveness; prioritise new products, strategic products (mechanical items, high-quality building materials, electronics, supporting industries, information technology, medicine, wooden furniture, etc.); promote the deployment of large-scale projects; and focus on developing industry in support for agriculture and rural development. On tourism, the province will take measures to create breakthrough development in tourism and services on the basis of promoting its advantages of being a regional centre, being the Ancestral Land, and being a part of Hanoi region. Phu Tho province is striving to become a centre of return-to-origin tourism and eco-tourism with nucleus being Hung Temple, Viet Tri Festival City, Hung King era-related historical vestiges. Particularly, the province is home to two World Intangible Cultural Heritages of Humanity, namely the worship ritual of Hung Kings and Xoan singing. Agriculture and forestry will be comprehensively developed towards sustainability.
What measures will Phu Tho province take to further promote investment for a rapid, sustainable development?
To achieve the goal of rapid, efficient and sustainable development, in addition to maximising its internal resources, Phu Tho province will also flexibly mobilise external investment resources to accelerate socioeconomic development. Resources from foreign companies will play an important role. Phu Tho province has shown its resolution to improve the investment climate and renovate investment promotion activities.
In the near future, Phu Tho will continue to improve investment promotion, administrative reform and investment environment to attract investors. Investment promotion activities will focus on the following areas: industrial zones and remote areas; high-tech sectors; manufacturing and assembly of electrical and electronic devices; automobile, manufacturing of motorcycles and automobiles; mechanical engineering; software production; labour-intensive sectors, aquaculture, aquatic - forest product processing; production, processing and export of agricultural products; mining and processing of minerals; chemical and pharmaceutical production; tourism development.
Phu Tho also encourages investors with various investment forms like BOT (build operate transfer), BT (build - transfer), wholly foreign investment, joint venture, and others. The province also has guidelines and policies to attract investment capital for infrastructure construction in townships, industrial zones, trade zones, tourist sites and entertainment centres. Phu Tho is committed to creating the most favourable conditions for domestic and foreign investors to do business in the locality.
Thank you very much!