To cope with the complicated development of the COVID-19 pandemic since the beginning of this year, in addition to strict prevention measures, Kien Giang province has also adapted promotion and investment attraction programs to new normal; and ensured the timely execution of approved plans to achieve the overall development goal.
Improving investment climate, changing approaches to investment promotion
In the first six months of 2021, Kien Giang province granted operation licenses to 745 new companies which registered to invest a total of VND13,926 billion, up 24% in companies and 2.2 times in value from the same period of last year. The province also saw progress in investment attraction as it approved in principle five projects which registered to hire 17.37 ha of land and invest VND622 billion, thus affirming that Kien Giang is a safe and attractive destination for investors.
The above positive results also showed that investment promotion has been closely directed by the provincial government and actively responded by relevant agencies of all levels and branches, especially the Kien Giang Investment, Trade and Tourism Promotion Center which has actively changed its approaches in investment promotion and investment environment improvement, thus continuously generating new magnetism to businesses and investors. To give expert advice to programs under the Investment Law, since the beginning of 2021, the center has coordinated with relevant agencies and localities to counsel the Provincial People's Committee to issue three investment promotion programs for 2021, 2022 and 2021-2025.
Ms. Nguyen Duy Linh Thao, Director of the Kien Giang Investment, Trade and Tourism Promotion Center, said, given the complicated and prolonged fourth outbreak of COVID-19, overseas investment promotion is faced with numerous difficulties. Therefore, the center has focused on improving the effect of localized investment promotion which focused on supporting existing investors in carrying out their projects until official operation, thus making them feel confident that Kien Giang province is a safe, friendly and attractive destination. The center has actively introduced its potential projects to strategic investors with potential finance, experience and technology (in India, South Korea and other countries) at its website www.kiengianginvest.com; made a list of qualified strategic investors to call for their investment into the province; attended online investment promotion activities organized by the Government of Vietnam like Meet USA, Meet Los Angeles and Live Talks with Florida; provided information on such publications as Kien Giang - Investment potentials and opportunities, investment incentive policies, investment project list and commercial product list of Kien Giang province; enlisted the help of the Vietnamese Embassy in the United Kingdom, the Vietnam Trade Office in the United Kingdom and the British Business Association in Vietnam to support trade and investment promotion with partners in the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland.
In addition, the center advised the Provincial People's Committee to host an online conference on Kien Giang - Odisha (India) cooperation in agriculture and fisheries; attended an online meeting on the initiative of investing in the establishment of "Pharmaceutical Park" in Vietnam held by the Vietnamese Embassy in India; and organized the Business Meeting in 2021. Following the direction of the Provincial People's Committee, the center also successfully organized the Kien Giang PCI Analysis Conference in 2020, then assisted the Provincial People's Committee to make an analysis report to the Provincial Party Committee; worked with the Kien Giang Business Association and district-level governments to open five communication events on PCI to inform business communities in Rach Gia, Chau Thanh, Kien Luong, Ha Tien and Phu Quoc; coordinated with the Foreign Investment Agency (FIA) - Ministry of Planning and Investment, the Center for Investment Promotion, Industry and Trade Development under the Vietnam Trade Promotion Agency (Vietrade) - the Ministry of Industry and Trade, foreign investment promotion agencies in Vietnam, domestic and foreign business associations and media agencies to introduce the province's investment potential and opportunities. It also met and worked with domestic investors to survey tourism and urban investment projects in Rach Gia, Phu Quoc, Ha Tien and Kien Luong; promptly and fully updated investment guidelines, mechanisms, policies and projects and helped investors find investment information in Kien Giang province.
Director Thao said, the complicated development of the pandemic has had a significant impact on investment, trade and tourism promotion. The center has actively carried out many promotion activities adapted to new local situations; coordinated with relevant agencies and localities to promptly advise the Provincial People's Committee to issue programs and plans in socioeconomic management, and effectively participated in international economic integration.
To effectively grasp opportunities from new free trade agreements signed by Vietnam like the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP), the EU - Vietnam Free Trade Agreement (EVFTA), the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) and the EU - Vietnam Investment Protection Agreement (EVIPA), the center has focused on accelerating market research, market information, world economic prospects and international economic relations amid the global COVID-19 pandemic crisis to serve its investment and trade promotion. The center has also constantly diversified its information channels and sources, utilized cooperation with foreign partners with Vietnam in general and Kien Giang in particular such as business associations of Japan, India, Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand, the UK, the US, Australia, Germany, South Korea and Italy; the Korea Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KCCI); the Korea Trade Promotion Agency (KOTRA); the Japan Trade Promotion Organization (JETRO) and the German Chamber of Commerce and Industry (GIC/AHK). From these efforts, the center professionalized investment, trade and tourism promotion and market research and achieved positive results, thus leaving deep impressions on businesses and investors of Kien Giang province as a safe and effective destination.
Raising quality and effect of investment promotion
Continuing what it has positively achieved, in the remaining months of the year, the Kien Giang Investment, Trade and Tourism Promotion Center will support continued localized investment promotion by proactively approaching and supporting large partners and investors to explore local investment opportunities, especially in prioritized areas to draw investors. The center will introduce local potential, strengths and investment opportunities to business associations, domestic and foreign enterprises; regularly update legal documents, guidelines and policies on investment attraction issued by the Government of Vietnam to adapt local regulations and policies to local actual conditions and situations; and focus on removing difficulties against ongoing projects.
In addition, the center will concentrate on improving the quality and effect of investment promotion; attracting resources for sustainable development with priority given to high-quality FDI projects engaged in high technology (especially smart agriculture, renewable energy and supporting industries) in support of technology transfer, environmental protection and smart cities. The center will promote and facilitate enterprises to participate more deeply in global and regional value chains and supply chains. “As production and business activities are being negatively impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, Kien Giang province is determined to support investors and businesses to overcome the current difficult period. The province is effectively carrying out support policies adopted by the Government of Vietnam and proactively removing existing business obstacles for them to build a close government-business connection. This not only motivates them to do more business, but also makes the Kien Giang investment environment more attractive to investors. This year, the Provincial Party Committee and the Provincial People’s Committee have close support and direction for improving the PCI Index. Kien Giang province recently set up a steering committee for PCI Improvement in a bid to better serve the people and businesses
By Cong Luan, Vietnam Business Forum