During a sharing session earlier this year regarding the development strategies and attracting foreign investment, experts pointed out the "bottlenecks" that Thua Thien Hue faced in its development strategy and FDI attraction. These included the need to focus on enhancing foreign promotion and marketing, investing in infrastructure, and concentrating on local strengths such as education, healthcare, and tourism, … However, recent developments have indicated that these difficulties are gradually being overcome.
During the "Meeting with Thailand" conference held in Quang Tri in early August, participating in the panel discussion on the "East-West Economic Corridor (EWEC): Promoting Cooperation and Supply Chain Integration," Mr. Phan Quy Phuong, Vice Chairman of the Provincial People's Committee, emphasized the importance of international cooperation, particularly along the East-West Economic Corridor.
Mr. Phan Quy Phuong has informed international partners about the infrastructure investment efforts in the transportation sector within Thua Thien Hue province. It is worth noting the facilitation of transportation, import, and export of goods through Chan May port, Thuan An, and the specialized port of Dien Loc. Additionally, the province has proposed and received approval from the Prime Minister to upgrade and expand National Highway 49 through the Hong Van/Cau Tai - Salavan border gate with Laos. There are also plans to study and invest in the early construction of Route 71 through the Hong Van - Cau Tai and A Dot - Ta Vang border gates. These road connections are of significant importance, providing impetus for the development of countries along the East-West Economic Corridor.
This conference was just a small part of the ongoing efforts by the provincial government. Thua Thien Hue province consistently prioritizes investment attraction and FDI promotion through various promotional programs in Japan, South Korea, China, and other countries. A notable example is when Mr. Phan Quy Phuong, Vice Chairman of the Provincial People's Committee, presented the Investment Registration Certificate to Okura Industrial Co. Ltd., for their adhesive and resin-based products manufacturing plant project, immediately after the "Investment Promotion and Local Vietnam Branding" seminar held in Tokyo, Japan.
So far, projects such as the Hue Kanglongda Factory in Phong Dien Industrial Park, Aeon Mall Hue, and Phu Son Household Waste Treatment Plant, … have been implemented, helping to solidify Hue's position. The objectives of these projects are not only to contribute to socio-economic development but also to create employment opportunities for thousands of local workers.
According to a report from the Provincial Department of Planning and Investment, during the first 7 months of the year, several products from FDI enterprises have made significant contributions to the overall achievements of the province. Notably, beer production reached 197 million liters, an increase of 23.4% compared to the same period last year (including bottled beer at 66.6 million liters, up 18%, and canned beer at 130.4 million liters, up 26.3%). Besides, Frozen shrimp production reached 3,151.2 tons, an increase of 6.8%. Among the 19 newly licensed projects with a total registered investment capital of 5,023 billion VND, there were 5 FDI projects with a registered capital of 39 million USD.
Looking back at the period from 2013 to 2022, Thua Thien Hue attracted 87 FDI projects with a total registered capital of 2.75 billion USD, accounting for 74% of the total number of projects and 63% of the total FDI capital attracted during that period. Foreign-invested projects contributed approximately 12% to the Gross Regional Domestic Product (GRDP) and over 25% of the local budget revenue annually. Notably, Carlsberg Vietnam Beer Co, Ltd., (Denmark) contributed an average of 2,300-3,000 billion VND annually, accounting for about 20-25% of the local budget revenue and over 65-70% of the foreign-invested enterprise sector. The FDI sector has also provided employment for over 24,500 workers in the province. This demonstrates the crucial role of FDI in promoting socio-economic development.
The prospects and development vision of Thua Thien Hue province are now aligned with Resolution 54 of the Politburo. By 2025, Thua Thien Hue aims to become a centrally-governed city and one of the six key urban areas in Vietnam, based on the preservation and promotion of the value of its Imperial Capital heritage and Hue's cultural identity.
The province has to assert itself as an attractive investment destination. Thua Thien Hue has recently completed the upgrade of the international terminal at Phu Bai International Airport, with a capacity to accommodate 5 million passengers per year. The construction of Phase 1 of the breakwater at Chan May Port has been completed (450m), and its Phase 2 (an additional 300m) is currently underway, with an expected completion in the fourth quarter of 2024. The province has also granted investment licenses for the construction of Berths 4 and 5 at Chan May Port, which will have the capacity to receive general cargo and container ships up to 4,000 TEUs, meeting the demand for container transportation in the upcoming period. These recent infrastructure developments have highlighted Thua Thien Hue's commitment to enhancing its investment environment.
With its existing potential, Mr. Tran Dinh Thien, former Director of the Vietnam Institute of Economics, believes that Thua Thien Hue has the conditions to become a major urban and tourism center, opening up numerous opportunities for investors in various sectors. These sectors include urban tourism, medical resort tourism, port infrastructure development, industrial zones, international flight connections to Hue, and digital transformation.
The year 2023 holds significant importance to Thua Thien Hue province since it is identified as a year of acceleration and breakthrough in socio-economic development. By this, the province aims to expedite the process of building and developing Thua Thien Hue into a centrally-governed city, in accordance with the Politburo’s Resolution 54.
According to Mr. Nguyen Van Phuong, Deputy Secretary of the Provincial Party Committee, Chairman of the Provincial People's Committee, the province will continue to focus on and improve investment promotion efforts, aiming to enhance effectiveness and innovation. Additionally, Thua Thien Hue will strive to improve the investment and business environment by addressing obstacles faced by each project and completing procedures as quickly as possible. The goal is to swiftly operationalize projects and increase their contributions to economic development.
Mr. Nguyen Van Phuong also mentioned that the province will focus on mobilizing and allocating investment resources to accelerate key transportation projects, technical infrastructure, and industrial zone infrastructure, etc. They will concentrate their efforts on expediting the implementation progress and disbursement of public investment funds.
Thua Thien Hue province will prioritize the development of high-quality human resources, particularly in technical, technological, laws, and financial fields, etc. They will proactively train skilled labor to meet the demands of key FDI projects. The province aims to promote the linkage between FDI enterprises and training institutions through various appropriate forms of collaboration to enhance the labor market information system.
“We would continue maximizing the responsibilities of the four working groups established in 2022, directly led by the Chairman and Vice Chairmen of the Provincial People's Committee. These working groups aim to closely monitor and collaborate with businesses to address difficulties and obstacles in project implementation,” emphasized Mr. Nguyen Van Phuong.