After 25 years since re-establishment, Soc Trang province has achieved encouraging socio-economic development results. And, industry has made a spectacular breakthrough with a higher growth rate than the province’s GDP growth and thus contributing significantly to local industrialisation and modernisation.
According to the Soc Trang Department of Industry and Trade, the province’s GDP growth averaged 10.52 per cent a year in 1993 to 2016 and the industry - construction sector climbed 14 per cent. Taking only industry into consideration, its industrial production value was only VND478 billion in 1992 but it soared to VND10,376 billion in 2015, with the average year on year growth of 14.32 per cent in this period. The value in 2016 was 16.16 per cent higher than in 2015.
Processing and manufacturing (mainly processing) always accounts for nearly all industrial value. In 2010, the industrial production value was VND15,786 billion and the processing and manufacturing sector accounted for VND15,505 billion, or 98.22 percent. 2016, the industrial production value was VND25,002 billion and the processing and manufacturing sector made VND24,463 billion, or 97.85 per cent. The average annual growth in 2011 - 2016 was 7.9 per cent.
In addition to the spearhead processing industry, Soc Trang has great potential for developing energy industry such as thermal power, wind power and solar power. And, this industry is expected to open a new breakthrough direction for the province in some years to come. Typical energy projects include Long Phu Thermal Power Centre with three plants with a capacity of 4,320 MW covering 420 ha (Long Phu 1 with 1,200 MW invested by PetroVietnam Group and expected to have the first turbine generate electricity in 2018 and the second turbine to go into operation in 2019, Long Phu 2 with 1,320MW invested by TATA Power Group of India and expected to have the first turbine to start commercial power generation in 2021 and the second unit to start operation in 2022, and Long Phu 3 with 1,800 MW invested by PetroVietnam and expected to have the first engine to start operation in 2011 and the second and third turbines to be operational in 2022.) Once being operational, these three thermal power projects will have positive impacts on local economic restructuring. Long Phu 1 is expected to generate VND2,650 - 6,250 billion of industrial production value according to the generation increase roadmap to 2020.
Besides Long Phu Thermal Power Centre Project, Soc Trang province also has wind and solar power projects. According to the Wind Power Development Plan to 2020, with a vision to 2030, Soc Trang will 22 locations to install wind power mills with a total capacity of 1,470 MW. To date, 12 investors have registered for 19 positions to carry out pre-feasibility studies. One investor was granted the licence certificate and four are preparing investment procedures. In 2018, two or three investors will install wind-to-power turbines and the rest will invest and operate in 2018 - 2020 with the total installed capacity of about 600 MW. “In addition, Soc Trang province is planning to develop solar power. Five investors registered to set up solar power projects in combination with aquaculture, with high-tech agricultural production and with wind power,” said Mr Vo Van Chieu, Director of the Department of Industry and Trade of Soc Trang.
He said, the industry and construction sector will account for 20.57 per cent of the province’s gross domestic product (GDP) by 2020 and 29.64 per cent by 2025. The industrial production value (based on the price in 2010) will reach VND43 trillion by 2020 and VND90 trillion in 2025. The average industrial growth will be 14 per cent a year in 2016 - 2020 and 16 per cent in 2021 - 2025. These forecasts are based on prospects that Soc Trang province will have six large-scale industrial zones and 19 smaller industrial complexes where many industries like chemical, garment and textile, leather and footwear, electronics, construction material and especially power industry will thrive.