Lai Chau Determined to Improve Business Environment

10:38:06 PM | 21/4/2016

To further expand cooperation, attract resources for socioeconomic development, and effectively implement Resolution 19/NQ-CP dated March 12, 2015, Lai Chau province is determined to take many new steps and solutions, like public administration reform and policy troubleshooting, to improve its business environment and competitiveness. Vietnam Business Forum has an interview with Mr Nguyen Quang Huy, Director of Department of Planning and Investment of Lai Chau province, on this issue.
How do you assess Lai Chau province’s direct investment attraction results in recent years?
In the past years, Lai Chau province has focused on attracting investment capital, reforming administrative procedures, and issuing investment preference and support policies in line with local conditions and laws. Therefore, investment attraction has seen positive development steps. More projects with higher effect have been licensed. The province has licensed 124 investment projects with a total registered capital of VND215,542.8 billion since 2004. Invested fields include hydropower, rubber planting, tea growing and processing and trade. Typically large projects are Lai Chau, Huoi Quang, Ban Chat, Nam Na 1, Nam Na 2, Nam Na 3, and Pac Ma hydropower plants; rubber farms in Sin Ho, Muong Te, Nam Nhun and Than Uyen districts; and tea growing and processing projects in Tam Duong and Tan Uyen district.
However, the results achieved are still under our expectations. Many potential fields have not attracted enough investment capital like reforestation, agro-forestry product processing, aquaculture on hydroelectric reservoirs, medicinal plant cultivation and processing, tourism development, export and import, and trading. The province has attracted quite few foreign investment projects, while licensed projects have small scales and produced simple products with low competitiveness. Besides, investment projects have low production, business and management levels; thus, they have not generated considerable impacts on socioeconomic development. Furthermore, many projects cannot go as expected because of limited capacity of investors. There are a lot of reasons for this reality such as its extremely difficult social and economic conditions, its distance from major economic centres, and its separation from other localities by complex terrain.
On April 23, 2016, Lai Chau Provincial People’s Committee in collaboration with the Joint Stock Commercial Bank for Investment and Development of Vietnam (BIDV) will organise Lai Chau Investment and Tourism Promotion Conference 2016. The event is designed to promote local potential, introduce mechanism incentives and investment projects, and create a forum for authorities, investors, businesses to exchange dialogues, experiences and expand cooperation.
2016 is the first year of the 2016-2020 medium-term plan. Could you please briefly introduce some investment attraction orientations and solutions for the next five years?
In the 2016-2020 period, Lai Chau province defines infrastructure investment as one of three key development breakthrough stages. The province’s orientations are to mobilise all development investment resources, particularly from big companies; provide favourable conditions for attracting foreign capital in various forms; and gradually restructuring public investment by reducing the rate of State funding in total social investment capital.
To carry out the above orientations, Lai Chau will continue to apply investment incentive and support policies to encourage, facilitate and create a fair and favourable environment for all economic sectors to develop. The province will also step up public administration reform where a focus is put on reviewing, simplifying and abolishing unnecessary administrative procedures and reducing time and expenses for companies.
In addition to completing industry, investment and infrastructure development plans, particularly transport infrastructure, industrial infrastructure and approved economic zones, Lai Chau has also strengthened State management in coordination, supervision and inspection of investment activities.
Besides, Lai Chau will push investment promotion activities to introduce its potential, advantages and opportunities for development, its investment incentive and support policies and the list of key projects to domestic and foreign investors and businesses. The first Lai Chau investment and tourism promotion conference 2016 is one specific activity Lai Chau province plans to bring itself closer to friends and partners.
On September 4, 2015, the Lai Chau Provincial People’s Committee issued Decision 1324/KH-UBND on planning for the execution of Resolution 19/NQ-CP of the government dated March 12, 2015 on major measures for continued improvement of business environment and national competitiveness in 2015 and 2016 in the province of Lai Chau. As the leader of the Department of Planning and Investment, the chief advisory body to the province on issuing and implementing the decision, what do you think about implementation process and initial results of Lai Chau?
In implementing Resolution 19/NQ-CP dated March 12, 2015 on major measures for continued improvement of business environment and national competitiveness in 2015 and 2016, Lai Chau province promulgated Plan 1324/KH-UBND dated September 4, 2015 on the execution of Resolution 19/NQ-CP. To date, most departments, agencies and district people's committees have made their own action plans with specific roadmap, targets, tasks and solutions to achieve the overall plan.
By the end of 2015, the implementation was quite synchronous and consistent and produced many significant results: the business establishment registration time reduced from 5 days to 3 days (3 days as planned), the tax payment time reduced from 541 hours to 171 hours a year (121.5 hours in the plan), 100 per cent of companies registering to use electronic corporate tax declaration (95 per cent in the plan), 95 per cent of companies paying taxes via electronic means (90 per cent in the plan), 100 per cent of companies refunded taxes in time (90 per cent in the plan), the time for completing procedures for compulsory insurance payment reduced from 50 hours to 49.5 hours, and construction licensing time shortened to 25 days from 30 days. Other indicators are being carried out but results are yet really clear.
What key projects and incentives will be introduced at the Lai Chau Investment and Tourism Promotion Conference in 2016?
Lai Chau province defined 21 key projects in three sectors: agriculture - forestry, industry, and trade - service. Introduced projects are engaged in tea growing and processing, medicinal herb planting, high-quality rice cultivation, cinnamon growing and processing, caged fish farming in hydropower reservoirs, tourism site development, and Ma Lu Thang border gate export - import service area.
Regarding investment incentive and support policies, investors will be granted land, tax, technology transfer, personnel training, infrastructure construction supports. Investment incentive and support policies are specified in Decision 08/2013/QD-UBND dated June 3, 2013 and Decision 02/2015/QD-UBND dated January 19, 2015 of the Lai Chau Provincial People’s Committee.
Currently, investment incentive and support policies of Lai Chau are posted on the electronic portal of Lai Chau province,, or the website of the Department of Planning and Investment,