Dak Nong Heads for Sustainable Development

5:15:56 PM | 5/3/2015

In recent years, slow domestic and global economic recovery, weak internal resources, lacklustre business performances, and slow-moving projects have dragged on the social and economic development of Dak Nong province. Dak Nong province has instructed and carried out many solutions to complete development objectives in the 2010-2015 period, said Mr Le Dien, Chairman of the Dak Nong Provincial People's Committee. Thanh Tam reports.
Could you tell us the major outstanding accomplishments that Dak Nong province has achieved in four years of implementing the Resolution of the 10th Provincial Party Congress of the 2010-2015 term?
In the 2010 - 2015 period, most socioeconomic development indicators of Dak Nong province met or exceeded expectations. The average annual economic growth was 12.41 percent. Per capita income more than doubled to VND32.75 million in 2014 from VND15.88 million in 2010. The economic structure changed positively. High-tech agricultural development programmes were brought into life and followed by many people and businesses, thus changing farming practices on many crops and livestock. Industrial production kept recovering and growing. Energy and processing industries contributed to stable economic growth and stabilised agricultural production. Commercial and service activities also grew stably. Trade infrastructure was upgraded to draw more investment capital into supermarkets and commercial centres in densely populated urban areas. Export turnover reached US$686 million in 2014, nearly three times that of 2010. Tourist infrastructure was gradually invested and built to tap local tourism potential.
Dak Nong province mobilised social resources for socio-economic infrastructure, created momentum for production and trade development, and improved the spiritual and material life of citizens. Administrative reform was sped up to create an open legal environment. The province also introduced business support policies, particularly for non-State enterprises, to expand the local business system and enhance local competitiveness. The province also launched solutions to raise its provincial competitiveness index (PCI) and sped up investment promotion activities to introduce investment potential and opportunities to domestic and international investors. As a result, Dak Nong has lured many big projects like renewable energy project, aluminium electrolysis project, macadamia planting project and grass-growing project for cattle. In addition, the locality also achieved successes in social and cultural domains, national security and defence and vocational training.
Compared with other provinces in the Central Highlands, Dak Nong has quite poor infrastructure. So, how has the province improved its attractiveness to investors?
Although its infrastructure is poor, Dak Nong has unique climate and soil conditions, and an abundant land fund. In 2015, National Highway 14 is scheduled to be completed to shorten the distance between Dak Nong and Ho Chi Minh City and Southeast provinces. This is a great opportunity for Dak Nong to lure more investors in the coming years.
To tap these comparative advantages, Dak Nong province needs to clearly understand its weaknesses in investment and business climate to address them in the coming time. The province has focused on reviewing all administrative procedures in relation to investment and business to define existing obstacles to lay the groundwork for the formation of the single-window mechanism for administrative procedures. It has also built a coordination mechanism for related parties in land compensation and site clearance to create land fund for investors. It has also mobilised all available resources for infrastructure development investment, particularly economic infrastructure, to generate driving force and integrate social infrastructure development resources, while promoting the role of investment promotion centres in supporting investors to deal with investment procedures to draw a better picture of Dak Nong investment environment. It has constantly improved the operational efficiency of the information portal and thematic websites of the province, and actively searched for new investors rather than passively waiting for them to come.
In addition, Dak Nong province has also actively reviewed and issued socioeconomic planning, industry planning, product planning, economic and industrial zone planning, investment projects, and investment encouragement policies to fit new situations. Especially, Dak Nong always defines the difficulties of enterprises as also the difficulties of the province, and helping them to deal with their problems is also helping itself to develop and draw more investment capital. Furthermore, it organises various training programmes to ensure adequate quality labour supply for enterprises doing business in the locality.
Dak Nong defines that tapping mineral potential, particularly bauxite ores, will be a motivation and essential resource for its socioeconomic development in the coming time. How has the province worked to bring this potential into full play?
According to the survey in 2010, Dak Nong had 178 ore sites with 16 major minerals like bauxite, tungsten, antimoal, basalt and natural mineral water. In particular, as planned by 2025, its bauxite reserve is expected to reach about 5.4 billion tonnes, accounting for about 67 percent of the country's reserves. These bauxite sites are close to each other, thus enabling the province to build large-scaled bauxite ore mining and alumina production complexes with the term of exploitation possibly reaching hundreds of years. Last but not least, the quality of bauxite ores in Dak Nong is considered the best in the world.
Currently, the Vietnam National Coal, Mineral Industries Holding Corporation Limited (Vinacomin) is building the Nhan Co Alumina Plant with an annual output capacity of 650,000 tonnes, expected to be put into operation in the second quarter of 2015. Besides, the government approved specific mechanisms for Dak Nong aluminium electrolysis investment plant in Nhan Co Industrial Park, with the first phase output of 300,000 tonnes, expected to go into operation in 2017. When the two plants come into operation, they will open up opportunities for Dak Nong province to develop some bauxite and aluminium supporting industries.
To gradually bring Dak Nong province out of poverty and create a basic premise for comprehensive and sustainable development towards industrialisation and modernisation, what are the province’s development orientations in the 2015-2020 period?
In the 2015-2020 period, Dak Nong will focus on developing human resources, building essential infrastructure and major urban zones, attracting investment, creating economic breakthroughs in mining, processing and high-tech agriculture, and developing service, tourism and trade.
Specifically, the province will mobilise social resources in addition to the State budget to develop synchronous infrastructure, successfully carry out investment attraction mechanisms and policies to draw more investors, develop private sector, foreign-invested enterprises, and SMEs, and prioritise locally potential and advantageous industries. Besides, Dak Nong province has focused on developing green agriculture, created breakthroughs in high-tech agricultural application, and promoted agricultural restructuring to raise the value of livestock and agricultural services.

The province has placed priority on developing industries with comparative advantages like agro-forestry processing; exploiting and processing mineral ores, especially alumina and aluminium smelting industry, and promoting post-aluminium processing industry which is seen as the key to its economic breakthrough.

Regarding high-value trade and service sectors, the province will try to serve the domestic market and cooperate with other localities to expand the market, especially with provinces in the southern key economic zone. Dak Nong province will invest to develop major modern commercial centres and supermarkets in highly populated areas and new urban zones while building synchronous tourism infrastructure to tap its tourism potential.