HCM City, Mekong Delta discuss investment, trade, tourism

Saturday, Jul 02, 2016 09:05

Nguyen Thanh Phong, Chairman of the HCM City People's Committee delivers speech at a conference on investment, trade and tourism between the delta and the city in HCM City on Friday. — VNS Photo Xuan Huong

HCM CITY (Biz Hub) — HCM City and Cửu Long (Mekong) Delta provinces should diversify the way they solicit investment from each other and promote trade and tourism, and draft specific plans to improve co-operation, according to the Southwest Steering Committee.

Speaking at a conference on investment, trade and tourism between the delta and the city in HCM City yesterday, Son Minh Thang, deputy head of the committee, said the delta plays a very important role in the country's economy by producing a lot of agricultural products consumed domestically and abroad.

It accounts for more than 50 per cent of the country's rice output and 90 per cent of exports, besides 70 per cent of fruit and 60 per cent of aquatic produce, he said.

But investment there, especially foreign, remains modest, he said.

Nguyen Thanh Phong, Chairman of the HCM City People's Committee, said, "The Comprehensive Economic Co-operation between the Mekong Delta and HCM City aims to create attractive investment opportunities for businesses in Viet Nam's largest agricultural region.

"Many solutions, especially in food production, agricultural and fisheries processing and fruits, have been deployed in past years, yielding positive economic effects for the region."

Having long-term links between HCM City and the delta, which accounts for 18.5 per cent of GDP, is the right way to go, he said.

Thang said, "Trade co-operation between the delta and HCM City has increased significantly, but remains modest compared to the potential.

"In terms of tourism, there are not many tours combining HCM City and the delta."

The conference offered a good chance for the two sides to introduce their potentials and strengths to promote trade, investment and tourism co-operation, he said.

"Businesses have a chance to raise the difficulties and obstacles they face with respect to administrative and investment procedures and others when investing in the region, so that central and local authorities could take immediate measures to resolve them."

Tran Huu Hiep, member of the steering committee, said since the delta's infrastructure and human resources are still underdeveloped compared with other regions in the country, transport infrastructure, irrigation and human resource training are among the promising sectors for investors.

Thang called on the city and delta to promote consumption of agricultural products and share experiences in hi-tech agricultural production.

They should join hands to develop tourism products and set up tours taking in both the city and delta, he said.

A booth on the sidelines of the conference. — VNS Photo Xuân Hương

Calling for investment

At the conference, the 12 provinces and one city in the delta and HCM City listed 69 key projects requiring investment, mostly in sectors like transport infrastructure, ports, hi-tech agricuture parks, agro-fishery processing, shopping malls, luxury hotels, and tourism and amusement sites.

Bac Lieu, Ca Mau, Kien Giang sought investment in maritime projects including ports, and An Giang and Long An in commercial and border gate economic zones.

Among the projects for which Hau Giang Province is soliciting investments are a US$50 million fruit preservation and processing plant, a $50 million high-tech agricultural park, and a $150 million market for high-quality agricultural produce.

HCM City sought investment in two sections measuring 9.11km in its metro line No2 from Ben Thanh to Tay Ninh, is monorail line No2 from Highway No50 to Binh Quoi, a 89.74ha hi-tech aquaculture park in Can Gio, and others.

Incentives will be offered to investors depending on the location and nature of projects.

Phong said, "With clear and open policies and a motto of viewing businesses' success as our own success, the city government is committed to continuing to create favourable conditions for domestic and foreign businesses to invest and do business in the city."

Besides, the city authorities are committed to working with localities in the delta, ministries, and central agencies to improve the investment environment, create favourable conditions and support enterprises with manufacturing and trading, he said.

Business executives at the conference said provinces and cities in the delta should reduce the number of industrial parks and focus instead on improving their quality to attract more investors.

In addition, due to the muddy soil in the delta, investors have to spend more on infrastructure there and authorities in the region should reduce or even waive land rents, he said.

On the sidelines of the conference, which was organised by the Investment and Trade Promotion Center in HCM City and the Southwest Steering Committee, the delta provinces and city displayed their specialties and provided information about themselves.— VNS

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