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Property FDI falls by half, projects top 2012 count

Update: December, 04/2013 - 08:39
The local property industry attracted FDI in 20 new foreign-invested projects and four others where investment was increased. This was 10 projects higher than for the same period last year.— Photo cafeland

HA NOI (VNS)— The local property industry attracted US$880 million in foreign direct investment (FDI) in the first 11 months of this year.

The investment was only half the amount for the same period last year, but the number of projects rose, according to the Ministry of Planning and Investment's Foreign Investment Agency (FIA).

The local property industry attracted FDI in 20 new foreign-invested projects and four others where investment was increased. This was 10 projects higher than for the same period last year.

In November, the nation had four new FDI property projects with a total investment of $300 million, the largest foreign investment in the sector since early this year.

VinaCapital, a foreign investor in Viet Nam, said Government policies had improved the property market. These included giving priority to social housing projects, a stable exchange rate for Viet Nam and foreign currency - and reducing bank interest rates.

Experts said that the local property market had not recovered, but the market had great potential for foreign investors. This was because housing demand was high due to a young population and slower pace of urbanisation.

However, foreign investors usually put their investment into existing projects.

This reduces risk in starting projects, especially the process of getting an investment licence, said Pham Sy Liem, former deputy minister of construction.

Nguyen Ngoc Thanh, deputy chairman of the Viet Nam Real Estate Association (VNREA) said high stocks of housing provided a great opportunity for foreign investors because local enterprises wanted to recoup their capital.

Savills Viet Nam, a foreign property consulting firm, said foreign investors from Japan, South Korea and Singapore had asked it to be a bridge to local firms in studying the property market.

The experts said however, there were challenges for foreign investors, including tax, administrative procedures and low market transparency. — VNS

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