Driving Force for Socio-Economic Development

2:42:30 PM | 1/26/2024

Despite the numerous challenges and difficulties encountered in 2023, the Binh Thuan Industry and Trade sector, with its central role in the economy, has reaffirmed its crucial position, making a significant contribution to local socio-economic development. Regarding the accomplishments achieved and the future development orientation of the industry, Vietnam Business Forum conducted an interview with Mr. Vo Van Hoa, Director of the Binh Thuan Department of Industry and Trade.

An overview of the Thai Hoa Wind Power Plant

Could you provide an overview of some of the most notable accomplishments of the industry during the past year?

The year 2023 was a pivotal period of immense significance, fostering the successful implementation of the Resolution of the 13th Party Congress, Resolutions of the National Assembly, the Government, the Provincial Party Committee, and the Provincial People’s Council on the 5-year socio-economic development plan for 2021-2025. Despite the unpredictable changes in the global and regional context, the Binh Thuan Department of Industry and Trade achieved positive results, thanks to the decisive leadership and management of provincial leaders across all levels and industries, and the consensus of the people and business community in executing tasks.

Specifically, the value of Binh Thuan’s industrial production activities (based on 2010 comparative prices) reached approximately VND40,610.9 billion, marking an increase of 3.8% compared to 2022. Notably, the production and distribution of electricity, gas, hot water, steam, and air conditioning reached VND16,822.7 billion, an increase of 11.66% over the previous year, contributing significantly to the growth of the economy. The water supply, waste and wastewater management, and treatment activities maintained a growth rate of VND256.8 billion, an increase of 4.46% compared to the previous year.

Currently, there are 15 industrial clusters in the province that are under infrastructure construction. To date, the province has 27 industrial clusters that have attracted and arranged more than 175 investment projects with a total area of 270.33 hectares, accounting for 35.9% of the industrial land area of the clusters, creating jobs for about 8,300 local workers. Some large-scale industrial projects of significant importance and development motivation include the Son My LNG Terminal Project, with a total investment capital of over US$1.3 billion, and the Son My I and II LNG Thermal Power Plant Projects with a total capacity of 4,500 MW and total investment capital of over US$4 billion. These projects have been approved by competent authorities and are being expedited in the investment procedures.

Domestic trade activities remained stable with an abundant and diverse supply of goods. The circulation of goods was smooth between areas in the province, and the prices of essential goods were quite stable, serving people’s production and consumption needs. Total retail sales of goods and service revenue in 2023 were estimated to reach VND95,480 billion, an increase of 28.57% compared to the previous year. Of this, total retail sales of goods were estimated at VND61,490 billion, an increase of 18.25% over the previous year.

Trade promotion activities were actively implemented and proved effective, especially in promoting the province’s advantageous products through survey and trade programs at the Socio-Economic Development Cooperation Conference Program between Ho Chi Minh City and the South Central Coast provinces for the period 2023-2025, and a series of events at the Vietnam-China International Trade Fair (in Lao Cai province), and the Industry and Trade Conference events of 20 provinces in the Southern region in Hau Giang province.

We have been actively promoting trade and e-commerce activities. Over the past year, we have supported 18 establishments that are part of the One Commune One Product (OCOP) program, and those that produce typical rural industrial products and other products characteristic of the province. These establishments were included in the project titled “Electronic Traceability Solution for OCOP Products, Typical Rural Industry, and Typical Strengths of Binh Thuan Province”. As a result, 98 products from these establishments have been assigned QR Codes for traceability.

In addition, an e-commerce platform for Industry and Trade has been launched across three provinces - Binh Thuan, Ninh Thuan, and Lam Dong. So far, 54 businesses have registered on this platform, listing a total of 152 different products.

Considering the significant contribution of the electricity and energy industry to the outstanding results of the Industry and Trade sector and to the overall economic growth, could you elaborate on the impact of this industry?

The energy industry in Binh Thuan province has made considerable strides. As of now, the province is home to 47 operational power plants, generating electricity with a total capacity of 6,523.21 MW. This includes four coal-fired power plants under the Vinh Tan Electricity Center with a total capacity of 4,284 MW, seven hydroelectric power plants with a total capacity of 819.5 MW, nine wind power plants with a total capacity of 299.6 MW, 26 solar power plants with a total capacity of 1,110.11 MW, and one diesel power plant in the Phu Quy Island district with a capacity of 10 MW. The total designed electricity output of these 47 power plants exceeds 31 billion kWh per year. The saved electricity output in the first 11 months of 2023 reached 53.82 million kWh, achieving 112.12% of the annual plan, with the expected saved electricity output for 2023 estimated at 58.7 million kWh, reaching 122.3% of the yearly plan.

Currently, the local offshore wind power sector is attracting significant interest from both domestic and foreign investors. Numerous qualified and experienced investors have recently registered and proposed to develop offshore wind power projects in the waters of Binh Thuan province, with a total capacity exceeding 25,000 MW. Binh Thuan has also implemented the Prime Minister’s Power Plan VIII and the directives of the State Steering Committee for key national energy projects, works, and programs, accelerating the construction progress of the LNG gas-electricity project chain to address the issue of electricity shortage. This aims to replace coal power plants as a base power source to support the development of renewable energy sources. Binh Thuan province has issued a decision to approve the policy of the Son My LNG Gas Terminal Project, focusing on directing departments and branches to proactively implement site clearance work and actively resolve difficulties and obstacles to deploy the Son My I and II LNG thermal power plant BOT projects.

What are the priority areas that you will focus on in the future, and what solutions have been proposed to achieve these objectives?

Industrial development is a crucial task and one of the three pillars for socio-economic development as identified in the Resolution of the 14th Binh Thuan Provincial Party Congress for the 2020-2025 term and Resolution 09-NQ/TU dated December 31, 2021, of the Executive Committee of Binh Thuan Provincial Party Committee (term XIV). It serves as a vital driving force for socio-economic development and a key sector for resource accumulation and long-term growth of the province’s economy. Specifically, the development of electricity production and distribution, along with the processing and manufacturing industry, are two primary industries in Binh Thuan province’s industrial development strategy.

To achieve these objectives, we will concentrate on the synchronous implementation of tasks and solutions to develop the energy industry, processing industry, and manufacturing. Emphasis will be placed on supporting the development of the energy industry to become a key economic sector, thereby creating a driving force for the province’s economic growth, with priority given to offshore wind power and LNG power.

Simultaneously, we will actively promote investment attraction to create breakthroughs in the agricultural, forestry, and fishery processing industry, aligning with the province’s advantageous products such as seafood, fish sauce, dragon fruit, durian, and rubber. The focus will be on appropriate scale, modern technology, and value creation. We will also develop solutions to ensure the supply of input materials for the agricultural, forestry, and fishery processing industry. We will foster the development of the titanium mineral exploitation and processing industry with a reasonable roadmap and scale appropriate to each stage, gradually forming mine-recruitment technology complexes and titanium mineral processing industrial clusters in sync with the infrastructure. We will focus on promoting cooperation in research, technology transfer, and investment in exploiting and processing titanium in sync with deeply processed products (pigment, titanium dioxide, metallic titanium, high-grade zircon, monazite).

In addition, we will vigorously implement administrative procedure reform, improve the effectiveness and efficiency of state management, and ensure synchronous and close coordination between sectors and localities in the industrial sector. We will accompany investors during the implementation process, promptly advise on removing difficulties and obstacles, and propose solutions to expedite the construction progress and implementation of major works and projects.

Thank you very much!

Source: Vietnam Business Forum