Building Enabling Government of Integrity and Action for Businesses

3:44:44 PM | 10/17/2019

Blessed with unique potential advantages plus investment incentive policies, Binh Phuoc province has become a destination for many capable investors bringing a lot of high potential projects. To further analyze this success, Vietnam Business Forum Magazine has an interview with Mr. Vo Sa, Director of the Binh Phuoc Department of Planning and Investment. Hoang Lam reports.

Could you please tell us more about bright spots in the investment picture of Binh Phuoc province?

Promoting favorable geographic location and potential economic advantages, Binh Phuoc has quickly become an attractive destination for domestic and foreign investors. Especially, the province has drawn many potential investors with big projects like livestock farming and processing projects of Dabaco Group, livestock farming and processing projects of CP Group, Ta Thiet Military Command Relic Project, Ba Ra Cultural - Lifesaving Complex Project, and solar power projects. In particular, Binh Phuoc was the first province to export organic chicken to Japan (Hung Nhon Group exported chickens to Japan on September 9, 2017).

In addition, Binh Phuoc always focuses on developing small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and foreign direct investment (FDI) enterprises. In 2015, the province had 4,539 businesses with a combined registered capital of VND33,261 billion. By the end of September 2019, it had 7,432 companies with total registered capital of VND68,035 billion.

On FDI attraction, the province had 134 FDI projects with total registered capital of US$1.1 billion in 2015 and 224 projects with US$2.254,700 billion by the end of September, 2019.

How do you assess the efforts of all-tiers of authorities of Binh Phuoc province in diversifying investment forms and investment attraction types?

Affected by global economic crisis, Binh Phuoc province encountered numerous difficulties in economic development in recent years, thus restricting its ability to fully tap local potential advantages. However, with the firm resolution and careful guidance of provincial leaders, joint efforts of agencies and localities, and effective and sustainable long-term investment strategy, high focus on reform and simplification of administrative procedures concerning investment and business, the investment environment of Binh Phuoc province has been considered attractive for domestic and foreign investors. The province obtained very good investment results.

The province has called on all domestic and foreign investors to explore investment opportunities by diversifying investment forms and fields and introducing key areas such as industrial zone infrastructure, tourism infrastructure, agricultural products, supporting industries and hi-tech agricultural production.

The most important factor to achieve investment attraction results and socioeconomic development results is the drastic resolution and direction of provincial leaders to change management methods, build investment attraction strategies, reform administrative procedures, and formulating incentive investment policies in the province.

The appeal of Binh Phuoc investment environment comes from support for the business community, conducted regularly together with administrative reforms and thorough investment climate improvements, thus winning the trust of businesses and investors. Could you tell us more about these efforts?

To draw more investment capital and promote socioeconomic development, Binh Phuoc province is determined to carry out a series of solutions to build an open and transparent investment environment and obtain comparative advantages over neighboring provinces.

Especially on policies on investment incentives and administrative procedure reform, in Resolution 31/2017/NQ-HDND dated July 19, 2017 of the Provincial People’s Council, the province committed to reduce the time to resolve investment administrative procedures in all stages to, at most, a third of the regulated time. Binh Phuoc also established and operated the Public Administration Service Center - the only place where investors file documents and receive results from authorities - to facilitate investors to carry out administrative procedures; and established the Startup Fund to provide seeding investment for innovative business startups. Recently, the Executive Board of the Provincial Party Committee also established a working group responsible for reviewing administrative procedures and constructing the electronic government (Decision 1409-QD/TU dated 20/5/2019 of the Executive Board of the Provincial Party Committee) to advise the Executive Board, the Provincial Party Committee and the Provincial People’s Committee to build an enabling government.

To increase dialogues and resolve hardships for investors, the province established and publicized a hotline to the Secretary of the Provincial Party Committee. Accordingly, all investors can directly report their difficulties and obstacles to the Secretary through the provided telephone numbers and email addresses, and the Secretary will direct relevant agencies and localities to seek solutions. In the past time, all reports by investors through the hotline have been promptly solved, thus building the trust of businesses in administrative reform. In addition, on January 30, 2018, the Provincial Party Committee issued Decision 246/QD-UBND to set up an investment attraction and business support panel which considers immediate settlement of requests and proposals on monthly and irregular basis to facilitate best conditions for them to operate. Right from the beginning of the year, the Provincial Party Committee and the Provincial People’s Committee settle requests on hardships for enterprises every week, thus building up business trust.

To mobilize resources for infrastructure construction, over the past time, the province has sought and effectively used investment funds for infrastructure development, especially transport infrastructure, to reduce the time and cost for businesses. Currently, Binh Phuoc's arterial roads linked to Ho Chi Minh City and Central Highlands provinces have been invested, upgraded and expanded to meet investors’ needs.

To plan and develop economic and industrial zones to create a land fund to attract investment, Binh Phuoc currently has eight operational industrial parks covering 1,194 ha, of which 70% of rentable area has been leased. By the end of 2020, the province will have 13 industrial parks covering a total area of 4,686 ha and Hoa Lu International Border Gate Economic Zone covering 28,364 ha (of which 3,580 ha of the central area was put into operation). This land fund is ready to serve domestic and foreign investors. In addition, the province licensed investors to build infrastructure for Becamex Binh Phuoc Industrial and Residential Zone in Chon Thanh district and Sikico Industrial Park in Hon Quan district. These two large-scale modern industrial parks are ready to welcome new tenants.

Currently, under the firm guidance of the Prime Minister on building an enabling government of integrity and action for enterprises, how will Binh Phuoc Province continue to implement this direction?

As mentioned above, in the guidance of the Prime Minister, the Executive Board of the Provincial Party Committee set up a working group responsible for reviewing administrative procedures and building e-government. At present, the group is reviewing procedures at provincial and local agencies (receiving, assessing, approving and delivering results). The Board will open a conference to inform administrative procedures to inform the business and investor community.

Firstly, strengthening information technology application. All information exchanged and coordinated for settlement of administrative procedures is made on the website of the Binh Phuoc Public Administration Service Center. The province will also deal with existing and emerging shortfalls on the public service website and an electronic portal; and review and adjust the process of settling investment procedures for businesses.

Secondly, reviewing all administrative procedures as per the Government's Resolution 02/2019; drastically carrying out all steps and stages of administrative procedures at the Binh Phuoc Public Administration Service Center. Currently, the Department of Planning and Investment has launched 63 administrative procedures on the center, including procedures for enterprise registration and cooperative amalgamation.

Thirdly, strengthening government - business meetings to learn about and seek solutions to hardships against businesses; Improving the responsibility of agency leaders and the quality of public employees in advising the settlement of administrative procedures and solution to hardships against enterprises.

Thank you very much!