|The production line of Tien Phong Plastics Company in Hai Phong city. Ha Noi, Da Nang, HCM City, Hai Phong and Can Tho were urged to create close links to sustain economic growth. — VNA/VNS Photo Huy Hung
DA NANG (VNS) — Trade and investment promotion campaigns and economic forums have yet to play a significant role in the development of five major cities in the country.
Director of Da Nang City's trade and industry department, Phan Van Kha, said during a meeting in Da Nang yesterday that production, retail and service values of five cities – Ha Noi, Hai Phong, HCM City, Can Tho and Da Nang – grew to over VND623 trillion (US$30 billion) during the first six months of this year, a 12.5 per cent increase in comparison with the same period last year.
The figure also contributed 43.3 per cent to the country's production, retail and service values in the last six months.
"However, even though the production value of five cities contributes 45 per cent annually, the link in trade and investment has not been satisfactory in the past few years," Kha said.
"Economic co-operation has just seen information exchanges, discussions of investment opportunity, trade fair and potential, but there has been no effective action," he said.
"The joint action of co-hosting conferences and forums on investments and trade were rarely seen, while the policy on investment promotions and hi-tech developments or supportive industries has yet to see an agreement signed among the five cities."
Vice Chairman of the Da Nang city's People ‘s Committee, Phung Tan Viet, said the meeting aims to find out solutions to tackle difficulties during the economic downturn.
"There are various challenges for us ahead when Viet Nam joins the ASEAN community in 2015 and prepares to participate in the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPP).
"It calls for further co-operation and close links among the five cites in creating power to sustain the economic growth and contribution to the country," Viet said.
"It is also a chance for us to set out a long-term strategy of industry development in joining world trade."
Despite an economic crisis hitting the world in late 2008, the five cities have seen medium growth in industrial production and exports in the first half of this year.
Hai Phong was the biggest with an industrial production growth of 11.8 per cent, ahead of Da Nang with 10.5 per cent, while Can Tho and HCM City earned 6.37 and 5.6 per cent, respectively.
Over 1,976 projects have been put into operation in 6,400 industrial parks and complexes in the five cities over the first half of this year, an equal value of VND4 trillion ($190 million).
Export turnover in the first half of this year has earned $22 billion, an 8.2 per cent growth in the same period last year, accounting for 31.3 per cent of the country's total export turnover.
However, only Ha Noi, HCM City and Da Nang have developed hi-tech parks, Information Technology (IT) parks and centralised information centres as well as electronic transaction centres.
Two cities, Da Nang and Can Tho agreed last year to promote co-operation in tourism, and a direct flight between the two cities will start from July 22.
Direct air routes are available between five cities. — VNS