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  Foreign Investment

Strengthening investment promotion

As of November this year, Vietnam has attracted US $5.29 billion, exceeding US $1 billion compared to the targeted figure for the whole year. This is also the biggest foreign direct investment attracted so far since 1997.

According to the Ministry of Planning and Investment, Vietnam targets to attract US $5.5 billion worth of FDI in 2006. Strengthening investment promotion is one of the measures to attract the FDI flows to Vietnam. Thu Ha writes.

Various investment promotion activities

The forum on investment co-operation and an exhibition of foreign direct investment in Vietnam entitled Vietnam Forinvest 2005 which was organised in early November in Hanoi was one of the biggest investment promotion events this year. This was an opportunity for Vietnam to introduce their investment environment as well as policies to foreign investors.

The participation of more than 200 delegates representing international organisations, diplomatic agencies, trans-national groups and FDI enterprises manifests the attention of investors’ community to Vietnam. Within the framework of Vietnam Forinvest 2005, Hanoi and Da Nang city also organised their own investment promotion conferences to introduce investment potentials and opportunities to the two cities.

After Vietnam Forinvest 2005, Ho Chi Minh City organised the first Investment Mart 2005. More than 300 investors took part in the mart to look for investment opportunities in the projects offered at the mart.

In addition, various investment promotion conferences have been organised in India, the Republic of Korea, Singapore and Taiwan with more-than-expected participation of investors.

Most recently, the Ministry of Planning and Investment sent an investment promotion delegation to Japan from November 7-15. The Vietnamese delegation had meetings with high ranking officials, presidents and vice presidents of around 20 leading Japanese groups including NEC, Matsushita, Canon and Toshiba. Besides a general meeting to provide information to investors, the Vietnamese delegation had separate meetings with each group to have detailed discussions. About 40 projects calling for billions of FDI were offered to the Japanese investors.

Earlier, Ho Chi Minh City also organised for the first time two investment promotion conferences in Singapore and Malaysia.

Changes to be made

It is necessary to renovate the way to mobilise foreign investment in order to attract more FDI in the time to come. Carefull preparations should be made before going overseas for an investment promotion event. In particular, more time should be spent on meeting directly with investors to encourage them to invest in particular projects. Projects calling for foreign investment should be detailed and attractive to investors.

Diplomatic visits by Party and State leaders have also contributed to creating opportunities for Vietnam to approach big business groups.

The Ministry of Planning and Investment is currently co-operating with the Ministry of Finance to submit to the Government for establishment of an investment promotion fund to help clear financial difficulties for investment promotion activities.

Investment promotion offices should be established in certain key countries such as Japan, Republic of Korea, Singapore and Europe.

Training courses should be organised for investment promotion personnel, especially those in localities.

Nhan Dan - (01/12/2005)

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