Trương Việt Dũng, deputy director of the Hà Nội’s Department of Planning and Investment, speaks to Hà Nội Mới (New Hà Nội) newspaper on what the city has done to become a leader in attracting foreign investment.
In the first six months of 2019, Hà Nội remained a leading locality in attracting foreign investment. What is Hà Nội doing to attract foreign investors?
Our investment and business environment has improved considerably. This is a driving force for the city to attract foreign investors. From early 2019 to June 20, Hà Nội has attracted more than US$4.9 billion in foreign investment – accounting for 28.6 percent of the total foreign investment in the country. It is estimated that in the first six months of 2019, Hà Nội was the top locality in the country in attracting foreign investment with a total sum of about US$5.3 billion.
Some highlights could be mentioned including the $500 million multifunctional entertainment complex with a horse racing course in Sóc Sơn District, which is awaiting finalisation of investment procedures by the Ministry of Planning and Investment.
What is the driving force for Hà Nội's success?
In my opinion, the main factor is municipal authorities’ determination to improve the investment environment and carry out administrative reform, especially stepping up the application of information technology in handling business registration or investment registrations, tax, insurance and land use, as well as increasing transparency in land planning and sector planning.
The city authorities have also vowed to stand with foreign investors throughout the course of their investment.
Hà Nội will continue to do its best to make the city an attractive address for both domestic and foreign investors in all domains, including culture and cuisine.
In terms of tourism, the city's authorities have targeted the US, European countries, South Korea and Japan as "key markets" to focus our tourism promotion efforts.
What have foreign investors contributed to Hà Nội’s socio-economic development?
The foreign investment sector has contributed considerably to the city’s development in recent years. Foreign capital has increased the total social investment fund – an important factor in maintaining a high gross regional economic product (GRDP) for Hà Nội. This capital flow has increased year on year, helping the city integrate deeper into the global economy, particularly in the regional production chain, as well as create new jobs for the city's growing young population.
The strong development of the foreign investment sector has also become a driving force for domestic enterprises to update their technology to produce better quality products and to raise the national economy's competitiveness to a higher level.
Does Hà Nội have the potential to attract even more foreign investment into the city?
The international and regional situation has developed rapidly and has presented both opportunities and challenges for Việt Nam. In 2019, the country’s economy has integrated further into the international economy. Việt Nam has become a member of many regional and global free trade agreements, including the ASEAN-China Free Trade Agreement and the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Transpacific Partnership. More recently, Việt Nam became a member of the European Union-Việt Nam Free Trade Agreement(EVFTA) and the EU-Việt Nam Investment Protection Agreement. These two agreements are expected to be signed on June 30.
As a result, a number of duties are expected to be dropped to 0% – a big opportunity for foreign investors to invest into Việt Nam and especially Hà Nội.
Hà Nội has decided to give priority to foreign investors in certain areas such as urban infrastructure development, information technology, innovation, tourism, education and training. In 2019, Hà Nội has set the goal of attracting more than U$7.5 billion in foreign investment. VNS