HA NOI — The northern province of Quang Ninh is calling for investment in a US$4 billion casino project and a $1 billion international airport – two key projects under its master plan for the Van Don Economic Zone, 45km from Ha Long City.
|A tourism complex on Van Don Island, Ha Long Bay. The northern province of Quang Ninh is calling for investment in a US$4 billion casino project and a $1 billion international airport. — VNA/VNS Photo Hong Ky
Covering an area of 1,800ha in the Van Don District's Van Yen Commune, the complex would include tourism, sports and entertainment facilities and would be expected to play a strategic role in development of this key northern economic zone. It would also help the district attract more visitors, especially foreign tourists.
"We yearly have received 6 million of tourist arrivals. However, the time of their stay were not long due to a lack of entertainment places," said the chairman of the provincial People's Committee, Nguyen Van Doc.
Doc said provincial authorities and the Ministry of Planning and Investment have been working to report on the project to the Prime Minister at this month's cabinet meeting.
The province would select investors this year to complete the project's first phase by 2015, while the whole project would be slated for completion by 2020, he said.
Nguyen Van Thanh, vice chairman of the provincial People's Committee, said the project would make Ha Long a world-class tourism city.
He said several investors had already sought approval from the Government to build a casino in the zone.
Sheldon Adelson, chairman of Las Vegas Sands Corporation, one of the world's leading resort developers, has previously expressed interest in building resort complexes worth as much as $6 billion in HCM City and Ha Noi.
The proposed Van Don International Airport would become the largest airport project in Viet Nam so far.
"Flights from the airport to almost all Southeast Asian countries would be less than two hours because of its prime geographical position," Thanh said. "Many investors have shown interest in the project, including a major Korean company, which has guaranteed financing."
The province has also called for investment in 16 other projects including tourism and entertainment services, seaports, border gates and logistics facilities, as well as in workforce training and infrastructure.
Tran Duc Lam, director of the provincial Department of Planning and Investment, said that the province was willing to pay 100 per cent of land clearance costs for 12 projects and 30 per cent for the remaining six projects.
The province has attracted nearly $3.8 billion in foreign direct investment in 89 projects since 1989, altlhough only $735 million has been disbursed, representing only 19 per cent of the total, according to ministry figures. — VNS