|A corner of Quảng Ngãi Province-based Dung Quất Shipyard. It is one of five projects which the Ministry of Industry and Trade asked investors to report on plans to resume operations and prospects for acquisition deals. — VNA/VNS Photo Huy Hùng|
HÀ NỘI — Deputy Prime Minister Vương Đình Huệ told the Ministry of Industry and Trade (MoIT) on Wednesday to hasten the handling of 12 inefficient projects under its management.
Nine months after the overhaul of the projects began, some have moved from losses to profits, some have generated investor interest, but some are struggling, according to the ministry’s report.
The ministry reported that Việt Trung Steel Plant and DAP No 1 Hải Phòng were now operating profitably, while ethanol projects in Quảng Ngãi and Phú Thọ provinces had attracted the interest of investors in possible cooperation or acquisition.
In addition, handling legal issues with contractors at some steel and fertiliser projects also improved.
According to the ministry’s report, four fertiliser plants under Việt Nam National Chemical Group returned to stable operation, running from 19 to 24 days a month.
The ministry aims to enhance corporate management, cut costs, expand the consumption market, improve quality and diversify products to revive these plants. However, except for DAP No 1 Hải Phòng, the other three remain inefficient due to higher-than-expected input costs.
The ministry said it issued temporary safeguard measures on several fertiliser products and continued updating market information to support fertiliser plants.
Regarding five suspended projects under the Việt Nam National Oil and Gas Group (PVN), including three ethanol projects in Quảng Ngãi, Phú Thọ and Bình Phước provinces, Đình Vũ Polyester Plant and Dung Quất Shipyard, the ministry asked PVN to report on plans to resume the operation of these projects, as well as prospects for acquisition deals.
The ministry reported that two investors were interested in operating the ethanol project in Quảng Ngãi and one seeking to buy the project in Phú Thọ.
No more Gov’t funds
Việt Trung steel plant reported profits from March at an estimated VNĐ67 billion (US$2.94 million) for the first half of this year and expected to pay VNĐ290 billion in taxes to the State budget.
MCC, contractor of the phase 2 of Thái Nguyên Steel and Iron Plant’s expansion project, resumed negotiations with the project’s investor on handling legal problems after the State withdrew its VNĐ1 trillion capital contribution.
The ministry said it would continue working on divesting out of Phương Nam Pulp Factory.
At the working session on Wednesday, Huệ asked the ministry to hasten efforts to remove legal hindrances in these projects within this year and tackle weaknesses by the end of 2018 in line with the Politburo’s requests. The Politburo has asked the issue of the 12 loss-making projects be resolved by 2020.
Huệ reaffirmed that the State would not pump additional funds into these projects, asking them to enhance savings and reduce operation costs. He also asked the debt restructuring of these projects to be sped up.
The ministry’s statistics showed that these 12 projects incurred total losses of over VNĐ16 trillion as of the end of 2016 on investments of VNĐ63.6 trillion, with loans accounting for roughly 75 per cent. — VNS