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Amata, Tuan Chau to build $1.6b IP

Update: May, 12/2015 - 09:27
Amata IP in Bien Hoa City, southern Dong Nai Province. — Photo
HA NOI  (VNS) — Thai industrial estate developer Amata Corporation has partnered with Tuan Chau group to develop a US$1.6-billion industrial park (IP) estate, Amata City Ha Long, in Quang Ninh Province.

"This is going to be a city and not just an industrial complex," Somhatai Panichewa, chief executive officer of Amata VN and president of Amata (Vietnam) Joint Stock Company, told Thai newspaper The Nation on May 7.

She said the IP, which will come up on an area of 36,000rai (or 5,789ha), will cater to the tourism industry as it is located next to the world heritage spot Ha Long Bay, a popular travel destination.

In late 2013, the People's Committee of Quang Ninh had agreed on the joint venture's investment procedures for a $2-billion hi-tech park and urban townships in Quang Yen, Uong Bi districts, and Ha Long City.

Panichewa also told The Nation that the construction of the 10-phase IP will require $1.6 billion and 10 to 15 years to be finished. It is expected to house some 1,000 factories, generate an investment value of up to $5 billion, and 300,000 jobs for local people.

Later, the IP is also expected to attract other industries and facilities such as research and development centres, logistics services, exhibition centres, and scientific laboratories.

CEO Panichewa noted that they submitted an investment application in May 2015 and are expecting to get an approval by the third quarter of this year.

Meanwhile, the joint venture company plans to start developing the first phase of the IP on 3,125rai (500ha) next year, with an investment capital of US$60 million, and finish it by 2018.

The CEO said Amata will fork out about $12 million for 20 per cent of the first phase to construct a high-tech industrial park to exploit an expected boom of electronic production in Viet Nam and to move Japan's production bases from China.

A Tuan Chau Group representative told Viet Nam News that the two sides have formed a Tuan Chau-Amata joint venture company, with Amata owning 70 per cent stake and Tuan Chau Group holding 30 per cent.

In order to raise funds for investments, Amata VN is planning to sell 139.83 million shares in an initial public offering (IPO) during the third quarter, she added.

Amata Corporation, which planned to pump 4.5 billion baht ($134.2 million) into domestic and overseas investments in 2015, told the Thai newspaper that it will focus on Viet Nam this year.

Amata VN expects that investors from Japan, South Korea, and Taiwan will show the willingness to move their production bases to Viet Nam, especially for establishing high-technology electronics companies. It plans to develop land in the IP estate for high-tech investments.

Amata is moving north as Japanese manufacturers are expected to shift their production bases there by next year. The area is close to China and Japanese firms can enjoy the benefits of Viet Nam's low labour costs while still selling products to China under the mainland's free trade agreement with Asean+6, known as the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership, said Panichewa.

LG Corporation has already transferred its television production base from Thailand and the Samsung Group is expected to invest $22 billion in the coming years to move its smart-phone production base, she remarked.

Amata Viet Nam was established in December 1994 as a joint venture of Amata Corporation Public Company Limited, Thailand, and Sonadezi Bien Hoa, Viet Nam, a state-owned developer of industrial estates in Dong Nai province. To date, they have developed Bien Hoa 1, Bien Hoa 2, and Go Dau IZ.

Meanwhile, as a real estate and hospitality service developer, Tuan Chau Group was set up in 1997 in Quang Ninh Province. Apart from owning Tuan Chau Island, the group is now building a cruise ship terminal worth $119 million and a golf course worth $7.1 million on the island. — VNS/The Nation

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