Bac Kan Determined to Create New Investment Impetus

12:44:50 PM | 21/8/2019

With the resolution and engagement of the entire political system, Bac Kan province has executed many solutions and activities to boost public administration reform, improve the business environment and enhance competitiveness to draw more investment funds to spur socioeconomic development. Mr. Tran Cong Hoa, Deputy Director of Bac Kan Department of Planning and Investment, grants an interview to Vietnam Business Forum Magazine’s reporter on this issue. Ngo Khuyen reports.

Could you please briefly introduce promotion activities and investment attraction outcomes in recent years in Bac Kan province?

In 2018, Bac Kan province continued promoting investment attraction activities and licensed 18 projects with a registered capital of VND4,459 billion, nine projects more than in 2017. By the end of 2018, the province granted investment certificates to 152 domestic projects with VND19,502 billion of registered capital (16 investment projects in industrial parks with VND7,000 billion) and three FDI projects with US$2.3 million. In the past time, the province revoked 28 projects (including seven projects in industrial parks) due to their failing implementation and legal violations.

In order to court more investors, in the past time, the province checked the fulfilment of investment commitments of investors who got investment certificates at the Bac Kan Investment Promotion Conference 2017. Investment promotion programs and activities were based on general guidelines and policies to lure domestic and foreign investment funds for social and economic development. Communications and publications on investment promotion were compiled by relevant authorities for investors.

All levels and branches in the province also focused on reviewing, updating and supplementing the list of projects seeking for investment funds; further introduced local potential, opportunities and policies on investment incentivization and support on mass media; deployed tasks and solutions for higher provincial competitiveness index; improved the quality of single-window services, especially the settlement of administrative procedures for organizations and individuals; and held dialogues between all-level leaders with organizations and individuals on administrative procedures relating to investment, land and construction to promptly handle difficulties and obstacles in the process of executing policies, ensuring effective project performance.

Over the past time, Bac Kan province has launched many activities to highlight its tourism potential and accelerate agricultural restructuring. What solutions and activities have been concretized?

Bac Kan has abundant land resources, with the largest natural forest area among in northeastern provinces, accounting for over 90% of its natural area.  Local people are experienced in growing and processing forest products for many years and this is substantial advantage for this sector to develop in the coming time. Since 2015, the Bac Kan Provincial People’s Committee has introduced some business incentivization policies to stimulate investment into agriculture and forestry in the province. In 2016-2020, the province planted 32,500 ha of forest, an average of 6,500 ha each year, to bring ​​the planted forest area to over 80,000 ha.

From its existing potential, Bac Kan province has attracted more investment fund for high-quality rice, vegetable, fruit and tea production, processing and trading projects and concentrated cattle breeding projects, especially pig breeding development, and motivate companies to switch investment from basic construction to commercial agricultural and forestry development. In addition, Bac Kan has focused on courting enterprises to invest in developing material areas for factories, with priority given to afforestation and restoration of commercial forest areas. The province has also facilitated investors to process locally sourced timber and sell processed forest products in 2016 - 2020 such as MDF products and wooden furniture.

Nature and landscape of mountains and forests are still untouched and untapped. This is also a great potential for the province to woo investors. At the same time, Bac Kan develops trade, service and tourism sectors, bringing into full play potential ecotourism and historical tourism advantages such as Ba Be National Park, Nam Cat Lake, Phu Thong - Deo Giang Victory Monument, ​​Cho Don Protected Warzone, and Na Tu Historical Site. Domestic investors have been encouraged and facilitated to develop traditional services such as transportation, trade, hotel, restaurant and tourism services to make Bac Kan a tourist center in the Northeast. Especially, the province is speeding up the planning of Ba Be Lake national tourist area (Ba Be district) and Nam Cat Lake ecological tourist area (Bac Kan City) to woo big, strategic investors to bring their projects and create new momentum for the local tourism industry in the near future.

How do you think about the quality and outcome of investment attraction in the province in recent years?

In recent years, Bac Kan province has strengthened investment support mechanisms and policies for prioritized areas, particularly agriculture, forestry, tourism, infrastructure and public services like ground rent, labor supply and training, vocational training, tax break and tax holiday. Besides, the province has fostered business support services such as widening access to capital, perfecting the legal environment for credit operations in support of enterprises, quickly resolving State incentives and support for enterprises, and promptly addressing their difficulties and hardships.

In addition, the province has buttressed administrative reform towards the single-window model and seriously implemented the “three no's” principle: “No harassment and bureaucracy”, “no more than one delivery of records in the process of receiving, appraising and submitting projects” and “no delay”. At the same time, Bac Kan has promoted information technology application and ISO standard application to administration and regulation.

Moreover, Bac Kan will continue to implement many solutions such as promoting planning, e.g. land use planning; widely publicizing approved plans; developing transport, electricity, water supply and drainage infrastructure, telecommunications and housing services for worker; preparing premises for manufacturing projects by completing infrastructure planning and investment in industrial zones. It will, at the same time, enhance and improve the quality of focused investment promotion activities to attract investors to Bac Kan province.

How is the establishment of the Investment Promotion and Business Support Center (under the Department of Planning and Investment) significant to the improvement of business environment, investment attraction and business support?

On June 11, 2019, the Provincial People’s Committee issued Decision 936/QD-UBND on establishing the Investment Promotion and Business Support Center under the Department of Planning and Investment.

The center is responsible for carrying out investment promotion solutions and programs approved by competent authorities; introducing and promoting the province’s potential and investment opportunities to domestic and foreign investors; attracting domestic and external investors; recommending and seeking investment cooperation partners; contacting, matching and organizing government - business meetings; proposing mechanisms, policies and solutions to promote internal investment; proposing effective investment attraction measures; and proposing foreign investment stimulation mechanisms and policies.

The center is responsible for providing necessary information on investment areas for investors and businesses through events concerning investment incentive mechanisms and policies and information about legal investment regulations; advising investors and businesses in selecting projects, industries, scales and locations; and providing investment services and procedures for investors to get investment decisions /investment certificates.

The center also advises and supports investors to carry out procedures to start and operate their projects effectively, like making plans for land compensation and site clearance, preparing applications for land ownership or land lease, making designs, surveys, technical designs and project cost estimates; consulting on bidding documents; and consulting on bid evaluations at the request of investors; providing services for foreign investors or enterprises to invest in the province such as hiring offices, recruiting workers, secretarial services and interpreters.

Currently, the center is consolidating its personnel, stabilizing its organizational structure, and advising the Department of Planning and Investment and relevant agencies and localities on investment promotion and investor support in the province.