2:25:19 PM | 18/8/2006
In mid-August 2006, the People’s Committee of Thua Thien Hue Province, Vietnam Chamber of Commerce and Industry (VCCI), the Municipal People’s Committee of Hanoi and the Ministry of Planning and Investment jointly opened a seminar to introduce Chan May-Lang Co Economic Zone and promote investment into Thua Thien Hue Province. At this meeting, many investors expressed their desire to invest in the province and enquired investment advantages as well as difficulties there.
Thua Hien Hue is the ancient capital of Vietnam and is one of five provinces in the Central Focal Economic Zone. The province has a very favourable geographic situation. Apart from having the important roads running through, it has Chan May Deepwater Port, Thuan An Seaport, Phu Bai Airport and newly established Chan May-Lang Co Economic Zone. Consequently, Thua Thien Hue has been specified as a gateway for the economic development of the Central Focal Economic Zone and a gateway of the East-West Corridor linking Myanmar, Thailand, Laos and Vietnam. According to Mr. Nguyen Ngoc Phuc, Deputy Minister of Ministry of Planning and Investment, with these geographical endowments, Thua Thien Hue can develop a commodity economy, expand the economic relation exchange with other localities in the country and regional countries.
Apart from its geographic advantages, Thua Thien Hue also holds a profuse and diverse source of natural resources with more than 100 discovered ores. Limestone, granite stones, peat and mineral water are among typical minerals. Thua Thien Hue also possesses a biodiversity and develops aquaculture and fishery at sea, lagoon and freshwater. The brackish water in the Southeast Asia’s largest Tam Giang Lagoon, 70 km long and 22,000 ha wide, is suitable for rearing and fishing various types of seafood, specially for export. These factors enable Thua Thien Hue to develop a sea economy.
To date, Thua Thien Hue has attracted 35 foreign-invested projects with a combined registered of US$218 million, ranking 23rd out of 64 provinces and cities nationwide. Although the first foreign investment capital arrived in 2002, it played a significant role in developing the provincial economy, contributing 40 per cent to the industrial production value, 10 per cent to GDP and 42 per cent to State Budget.
Chairman of the Thua Thien Hue Province People’s Committee Nguyen Xuan Ly said, the provincial authorities organised annual meetings with enterprises and investors to reconsider, assess and disentangle existing shortages. However, due to both subjective and objective conditions, the investment attraction result does not come up with expectations. He said the province is calling investors to explore business opportunities throughout the locality, especially in Chan May-Lang Co Economic Zone, Hue City, Phu Bai Industrial Park and Bach Ma National General Tourism Zone. To facilitate investment activities here, Nguyen Viet Manh, General Director of Incombank, said his bank will actively provide capital for legitimate investment projects in Thua Thien Hue in the coming time.
Ly said that tourism is a spearhead economic sector of Thua Thien Hue; therefore, the province attaches much importance to calling investment into this field. With the Hue Ancient Capital complex and the Hue Royal Court Music, two UNESCO heritages, as well as other supporting services, Thua Thien Hue is becoming a place of interest in Vietnam and in the region with millions of local and foreign visitors arriving here every year.
Most investors attending the seminar highly appreciated the implementation of investment incentive policies in recent years and the simplification of administrative procedures. An Australian investor said the close cooperation of the local authorities facilitated his company to produce commodities to serve major projects in Australia. He added the time for the execution of the project is very fast, about 2-3 times shorter than in Australia.
In the last five years, the average GDP growth rate of Thua Thien Hue is nearly 9.5 per cent. The industrial and construction contribution to the GDP raised to 34.1 per cent (2004) from 19.7 per cent in (1990) and service sector to 43.7 per cent from 36.1 per cent while the agricultural sector’s contribution was down to 22.2 per cent from 44.2 per cent.
We have a lot of assistance from local governments
Mr. Chiu-Yu-Kin, General Manager of LUKSVAXI
The Luks Cement Co. Ltd (LUKSVAXI) was set up in 1992 with an investment capital of US$15 million from the joint venture between Thua Thien Hue Construction Material Production Co. and Luks Industrial Group of Hong Kong. In January 2005, Luksavaki was transformed into a wholly foreign-invested company after reception of the agreement of the Prime Minister.
In 2002, we invested US$30 million to buy a new production line. With supports from the provincial and local governments, the company is planning to invest additional US$50 million in a new line. The annual output was raised from initially 500,000 tonnes to 2.5 million tonnes soon.
Do you know why we continue increasing investment here? It is because Vietnam has a stable politics and an emerging economy. Besides, the Thua Thien Hue customs and taxation authorities helped us a lot. Possibly, for many investors, customs and taxation authorities will arouse a concept of “fear” but it is different to us. Our commodities via Chan May-Lang Co Port and other ports in Hue are very easy.
Nonetheless, we wish the province to pay more attention to activities of investors here. In my opinion, more flights, especially international ones, should be opened to and from Thua Thien Hue. Currently, Thua Thien Hue has an international airport but only serves domestic flights. Besides, Hue also lacks shopping malls, which make our daily activities a bit uncomfortable.