Hoa Binh province has stepped up measures to support investors to accelerate their projects and launched various activities to facilitate business operations of local enterprises in the past years. Mr. Nguyen Van Phuc, Deputy Director of Hoa Binh Department of Planning and Investment, shared about the above contents. Ngo Khuyen reports.
Would you tell us about investment attraction of Hoa Binh province in recent years?
Hoa Binh province had 570 projects as of December 31, 2019, including 39 FDI projects with a total registered fund of US$573.2 million which hired 425 ha of land, and 531 DDI projects with VND69,369 billion of investment capital, which leased about 37,567 ha of land.
Leaders of the Provincial Party Committee and the Provincial People’s Committee of Hoa Binh province have focused on investment management to improve the effect of investment attraction and hosted many working meetings with domestic and foreign investors to promote and introduce local potential.
Authorities of all levels have actively supported important investment projects by reducing the time needed to complete administrative procedures, facilitating investors to soon launch their projects and start business operations. Their hardships have been timely addressed by the province. Every agency is assigned specific tasks at working meetings with investors and businesses.
Advisory agencies have worked closely with domestic and foreign investors through its information channels and meetings. In 2016, the Prime Minister approved the Master Plan for Hoa Binh Lake National Tourist Area Development to 2030 (Decision 1528/QD-TTg dated August 1, 2016). In October 2018 when Hoa Lac - Hoa Binh Expressway was opened, Hoa Binh province had a lot of opportunities and conditions to draw investment projects to the province. Many big reputable investors came to study the local investment environment and made investments in Hoa Binh province such as Vingroup, FLC Group and La Vong Group. In addition, the province received several investors from South Korea, Japan and Taiwan as well as ambassadors and counselors of Vietnam in some countries around the world to introduce the local investment environment.
However, the province’s investment promotion still encounters many limitations. Troubleshooting dialogues with investors are still ineffective because of poor uniformity of legal regulations, lax coordination of relevant bodies, resulting in ineffective, unsatisfactory settlement of matters faced by investors. Planning and management still lack visibility, forcing investors to fulfil many procedures before being approved by competent authorities to launch their projects (e.g. supplementing projects to sectoral planning; local land-use planning; land-use purpose conversion planning). Besides, Hoa Binh province has not developed investment attraction criteria to give priority to its potential, strong areas to make locally distinctive products and services of high value and competitiveness.
A common constraint in mountainous provinces such as Hoa Binh is technical infrastructure, especially for electricity, transportation and water supply, is not enough to meet business needs of businesses and investors.
In the coming time, the province will continue to accelerate investment promotion inside and outside the province to create conditions for investors to study and launch their projects; focus resources to reduce constraints and difficulties due to objective reasons; and proactively develop detailed investment attraction programs to effectively tap local strengths and potential.
What do you think about the progress of investment projects in the province, specifically nine projects licensed and 15 investors signing cooperation agreements at the Hoa Binh Investment Promotion Conference in 2018?
Hoa Binh Investment Promotion Conference 2018 was a great opportunity for the province to meet and introduce local development potential and strengths to domestic and foreign investors. At the event, nine projects were awarded investment licenses and 15 investors signed memorandums of understanding (MOU). Up to now, eight out of nine licensed projects are carrying out land clearance and construction procedures and one has already gone into production in a pilot phase. For MOU-signed projects, investors are actively coordinating with relevant bodies to carry out procedures of construction planning, construction design appraising and planning adjustment.
In order to monitor their project progress, directly inspect and urge competent agencies to support and resolve investment procedures for them to launch their projects on schedule, in October 2018, the Standing Board of the Hoa Binh Provincial Party Committee issued Decision 993-QD/TU to assign tasks and responsibilities to provincial leaders to direct settlement of their assigned projects. In addition, the Provincial People’s Committee added the content of solving difficulties and obstacles of investment projects for local businesses and investors to monthly briefings with departments, agencies and sectors to promptly remove and facilitate investment projects to come into operation soon.
What do you think about the quality of administrative procedures concerning investment attraction in recent years?
In 2019, public administration reform in the province continued to be a top concern.
Particularly, administrative procedures regarding investment, land and construction continued to be paid high attention to. Local land-use plans and construction plans are publicized to facilitate enterprises to study and explore investment opportunities. According to statistics on reception and settlement of administrative procedures released by the Hoa Binh Public Administration Service Center, in 2016, as many as 81.97% of records were completed ahead of regulatory time; 17.84% of records were handled in time; and just 0.18% of records were overdue. The reason for lateness was largely attributed to slow software operation on the electronic system although departments in service already completed processing documents.
Accordingly, in 2019, Hoa Binh province attracted 62 investment projects, including 56 domestic investment projects and six foreign investment projects, 10.71% more than in 2018. The Provincial People’s Committee assigned the Investment, Trade and Tourism Promotion Center to support businesses and investors to research, survey, and formulate projects to ensure investment licensing procedures fully implemented.
What are tasks and solutions Hoa Binh province will focus on to increase its PCI rankings?
In the coming time, Hoa Binh province needs to flexibly and effectively realize its goals and solutions; promptly and effectively address and propose solutions for practical direction and administration.
In order to better support local businesses, the province will continue to host direct dialogues with them to grasp their operational situations, deal with their hardships; encourage them to innovate and develop science and technology. Hoa Binh will also create favorable conditions to promote cooperation between research organizations and businesses, and improve the effective use of scientific research funds and the operation of science and technology funds.
As a mountainous province, Hoa Binh has a limited available land fund. In order to attract investment, in the coming time, the province will continue to review and handle slow-moving projects to reclaim available land fund for effective projects invested by competent investors. The province expects to draw strategic investors in order to make a remarkable outcome in investment attraction. As for licensed projects, the province will continue to accelerate their progress and remove difficulties against investors. In addition, the locality is currently studying planning resources to formulate a basis for identifying high-value commercial land that needs to be tendered to select competent investors and generate revenue for local budget.
In 2020 and beyond, Hoa Binh will continue to listen to opinions from businesses and investors to improve the business investment environment of Hoa Binh province.
In 2020, Hoa Binh province will strive to have no overdue records filed by investors and enterprises and shorten the time of settling administrative procedures by 30%; continue to improve the operational quality of the Hoa Binh Provincial Public Administration Center and district-level Public Administration Center in order to support and resolve submitted records in the most rapid and effective way for citizens; training public servants in professional qualifications, competence, ethics and responsibility to perform tasks; strengthen inspection and supervision of administrative procedure simplification, promote information technology application, provide online public services and maximize convenience for people and businesses.
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