The number of Foreign Direct Investment projects in the Mekong Delta are the lowest in the country with only 736 projects with capital investment of US$10.7 billion, accounting to as little as five percent of projects in Vietnam.
|Visitors on a farm tour in the Mekong Delta, which has still failed to lure foreign investors (Photo: SGGP)|
Long An Province leads with 477 projects worth $3.7 billion, accounting for 30 percent in the entire region. Can Tho City has an airport as well as a seaport, but despite efforts has only attracted 57 projects. Several other provinces have also tried to get more investments but so far have none.
Vo Thanh Hung, head of the Management Board of Industrial and Export Processing Zones in Can Tho City, said that 70 percent of goods to the Mekong Delta are transported by waterway. However, larger vessels cannot enter ports, especially on the Hau River.
According to Vo Thanh Thong, deputy chairman of the People’s Committee in Can Tho City, the Mekong Delta has too many industrial zones in similar fields like seafood processing.
The quick development of industrial zones has led to a surplus of 60 percent of their capacity, causing a lot of plants to shut down.
Besides, some believe the Mekong Delta has not created an attractive and professional investment environment and lacks basic orientation to promote the region.
Pham Thanh Khon, deputy director of the Department of Science and Technology in Vinh Long Province, said that local authorities should inform investors on difficulties and limitations in their provinces. This will help the investors anticipate challenges and make suitable production and trade decisions.
Head of the Vietnam Chamber of Commerce and Industry in Can Tho City said that high transport and logistic costs is the main obstacle for FDI businesses.
The Mekong Delta should have policies to first encourage investment in infrastructure including traffic, electricity and Internet. They should also have a specific mechanism to attract investments for the entire region.
Sharing the same view, Bui Ngoc Suong, deputy head of the Southwest Region Steering Committee, said that the Mekong Delta should propose to the Government to issue policies to attract foreign direct investment to the region.
They should also propose to the Government to have preferential policies on tax and land and invest more in infrastructure development.