Vietnam always welcomes stable and long-term investments from foreign businesses and is taking four key measures to increase its attractiveness in international investors’ eyes, Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung has asserted.
The Vietnamese premier recounted the achievements Vietnam’s economy has made over the past 30 years, since a large-scale economic reform was first in place in 1986, as he addressed the Vietnam Global Investment Forum in Hanoi on Wednesday.
Vietnam continually recorded a GDP growth rate of about seven percent per annum from 1986 to 2010, and the rate revolved around six percent between 2011 and 2014, according to the premier.
The country has targeted growth at 6.2-6.5 percent in 2015, which would be the fastest since 2011.
Vietnam’s foreign direct investment currently totals about US$270 billion, with more than 19,000 operational projects run by investors from 105 countries and territories.
The Southeast Asian country is a member of ten free trade agreements, with 55 partner countries, including G7 and G20 members.
It is expected to sign a trade pact with the European Union later this year, and hopes to conclude negotiations with 11 partners in the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement talks.
“But Vietnam acknowledges that such achievements still do not match its potential, and it is thus exerting more efforts to make the most of its potential for development,” Dung said.
There are four key measures the Southeast Asian country is enacting to make it more attractive to foreign investors, the premier told the forum.
These consist of perfecting the business environment, which includes the improvement of market economy institutions; the construction of investment infrastructure; the privatization of state-owned enterprises; and the development of the financial market.
Vietnam is determined to keep pace with such regional countries as Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand and the Philippines in business climate-related indexes, such as taxation, customs, construction, land, and power access, in 2016, the premier elaborated.
The country is also reforming public investment procedures to facilitate domestic and foreign investment in infrastructural development, and will publicize projects in traffic, energy, water supply, waste treatment, and urban facility construction under the public-private partnership scheme.
The restructuring of state-run enterprises began 20 years ago, according to the prime minister.
PM Dung said Vietnam once had 12,000 state firms but that number has plunged by 90 percent so far.
As for the bid to improve the local financial market, Vietnam has widened the foreign ownership rate in listed companies and lifted barriers to their investment in government and corporate bonds, the government chief said.
The Vietnam Global Investment Forum was jointly held by Euromoney, one of Europe's largest business and financial magazine publishers, and the Vietnamese Ministry of Planning and Investment.
The one-day event focused on Vietnam’s economic recovery and outlook for 2016, the equitization and privatization of state-owned enterprises, and infrastructure and energy development, among other topics.
“The forum took place at a time when Vietnamese and global economies are facing both opportunities and challenges, and Vietnam always welcomes stable and long-term foreign investment here,” the premier said in his speech to conclude the event.
“Vietnam views the success of foreign investors as its own success.”