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Policies fish for fresh cash sources

Update: April, 04/2014 - 08:55
Farmers tend to fish in Hau Giang. The State plans to renew policies related to attracting and promoting domestic and foreign investment in the local fisheries industry. VNA/VNS Photo Duy Khuong

HA NOI (VNS)— The state will renew policies related to domestic and foreign investment in the local fishery industry because of inefficiency in attracting investment to the industry at present.

This was stated by officials of the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MARD). According to the MARD, by the end of 2013, Viet Nam had 70 foreign direct investment (FDI) projects in the fishery industry with a total registered figure of a modest US$300 million. The domestic private investment in the industry also stood at low level.

Chu Tien Vinh, former deputy director of Fisheries Department under the MARD, said high risk and unattractive investment incentives had made domestic and foreign investors shy away from investing in the local fishery industry, reported Dau tu (Investment Review) newspaper.

Investors had made minor investments in the seafood trade segment and in feed for the industry, while the industry had mainly state investment, he said.

However, the state investment in the industry had also not met the industry's demand, he added. During the period of 2006-10, the investment to the fishery industry accounted for 3 per cent of the total investment in the agricultural sector. The MARD has increased the investment to 7 per cent for the period 2011-15 but it is still low.

The MARD expects to increase the investment in fisheries to 10 per cent of the total investment in the agricultural sector for the period of 2016-20.

Nguyen Thi Hong, head of the MARD's Planning Department, said in the future the structure of investment to the fishery industry would be restructured in the direction of cutting investment from the state budget and increasing investment from preferential credit, policies on calling private and FDI capital, and public-private partnership (PPP) projects.

The department has cooperated with large foreign corporations, including Metro Cash and Carry Viet Nam, Cargill and Fresh Studio, for implementing PPP projects in the fishery industry and has gained positive results.

Deputy Minister of agriculture and rural development Vu Van Tam said the ministry would review plans of fish ports across the nation to adjust and add investment policies for submitting to the Prime Minister in the coming time.

The ministry would also act as an advisor to the government and provinces to set up specific plans for developing large fish centres in Hai Phong, Da Nang, Khanh Hoa and Ba Ria-Vung Tau and attracting investment to the centres, he said. Such centres are also being planned in Kien Giang and Can Tho.

Meanwhile, the fishery industry will also change structure of investment to give priority in capital for infrastructure, logistics service, large regions of developing fisheries and fisheries varieties of the industry.

The industry will focus on intensive production, application of hi-tech for it and cooperation in production and business.

Do Thu Trang, from general research division under the Planning and Investment's Development Strategic Institute, said the provinces with a developed fishery industry should have long-term plans to attract investment to the industry and cooperate in promoting investment among regions. — VNS

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