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19/06/2017 - 09:16

Singapore businesses highly evaluate potential and strength of Hue

Recently, Singapore business delegates have come to Hue to visit, work, and survey sites for investment. The delegation was interested in and highly evaluated Hue with plenty of unique potential and strength. Mr. Le Van Thu, Director of Thua Thien Hue Investment Promotion Center, shared important information with the Thua Thien Hue Weekend about the Singapore business delegation’s work and meeting with the provincial leaders.

Mr. Le Van Thu

Regarding the meeting with provincial leaders, which field was the Singapore business delegation interested in, Sir?

They are interested in many fields such as service tourism, tourism training, capacity enhancement, quality of aquaculture… Some of the Singapore firms suggest cooperating to raise frogs in large-scale industrialization for exporting to Singapore. Frog is considered as a specialty of their country with famous dishes that have been imported into Vietnam, including Hue. They are also interested in tourism projects in Chan May - Lang Co, tour exchange between companies of Singapore and Thua Thien Hue in the form of training and exchange as needed…

Does our province have any reasonable guideline and policy to attract investment in the above fields?

With regard to the proposal for aquaculture export cooperation, the province is ready to support when enterprises come to invest and collaborate with Hue University of Agriculture and Forestry to transfer technology of raising frogs in the direction of safety and export-quality assurance. Nevertheless, the provincial leaders also demanded that Singapore firms commit themselves to consume, buy and avoid causing difficulties for farmers.

We also introduced the potentials, strengths as well as investment-priority projects in Chan May - Lang Co Economic Zone, industrial park infrastructure... for Singaporean enterprises to consider and choose when they decide to invest.

Does this mean that Singaporean enterprises are offered more favor than other domestic and foreign investors?

Not necessarily! At present, the province is focusing on administrative reform to call for investment. Investors enjoy the same policies in accordance with the law. Of course, the province will choose the most profitable policies for businesses to attract investment rather than favor foreign investors or domestic investors. The establishment of a special assistant team, with a full range of agencies and departments to support businesses with fast procedures when they invest in Hue is a specific demonstration of the policy of carpet cover for investment calling. This can be considered as a "one-stop door" of the business. The team will take care of all the related procedures for any project. This model has highly evaluated by corporations investing in Hue.

As you mentioned above, this is the year to promote the activities for investment calling; what has the province done to realize that?

Determining this year continues to be “Year of Business”, since January 2017, the province has organized investment promotion in Singapore, and the business delegation of 15 Singaporean businesses came to Hue to explore the potential, strength and investment opportunities as the initial result of that activity.

Thua Thien Hue province is also speeding up administrative reforms towards modern administration, supporting businesses to access procedures and projects as quickly as possible.

For the projects that have carried out their investment, the province directed the relevant agencies to prepare well clearance plan for investors to quickly deploy their projects. Provincial leaders are also concerned with the connection between banks and businesses, helping investors be active in the capital for their project implementation...

What about the realization of the Singapore delegation’s promise that their CEO team will come to Hue to look for investment opportunities, Sir?

After the meeting between the provincial leaders and the Singaporean business delegation, especially after the Singapore investment promotion, our biggest success is being known by many Singaporean businesses. We have promoted the image and the people of Hue to this country. They highly evaluate us in terms of potential, strength and investment opportunities. Then, the province welcomed and worked with the President of the Singapore Manufacture Federation, Mr Douglas Foo. The Singapore Manufacture Federation has about 5,000 manufacturers and firms. They commit themselves to contribute 20% of GDP to Singapore per year. If the affiliated enterprises of this federation come to Hue for investment, it is certain that Hue will have more development opportunities. The Saeke Group, managed by Douglas Foo, has about 3,000 stores around the world.

A view of Laguna Lang Co – a Singapore-invested project. Photo by: Phuong Le

And is this an opportunity not to miss?

Yes! Before coming to Hue, Mr. Douglas Foo thoroughly investigated and selected Chan May as an investment destination. The province introduced priority projects, with special focus on tourism development projects, expansion, investment, upgrading of ports and especially service investment projects at the port. Currently, we have 10 ports, but there are only 3 invested ports, and the 7 remaining ports are still in the process of calling for investment.

Is this an advantage in calling for investment, Sir?

The whole country has only 3 deep-water ports to receive large vessels, including Chan May. Unfortunately, when large cruise ships dock in the port, they carry thousands of tourists, but the number of tourists coming to Hue, staying and shopping is not much. If at Chan May port there is a worthy service zone and a stop for visitors to visit, rest, and do shopping, the revenue from this service won’t be bad. Each cruise ship usually has little time to stop at the mainland; if tourists do not want to visit Hue or adjacent regions, they still have this place to rest and do shopping. If this is done, Chan May port will become busier.

Have any of these projects been selected, Sir?

Not sure which project, but Douglas Foo’s visit to Hue is already our success. Investment cooperation is a process that requires time, but it is certain that the Singaporean investment is quite professional and efficient. The Laguna Luxury Resort project invested by Singapore's Bayan Tree Group is one example. An increase from the initial investment of USD 975 million to USD 2 billion at present is the concrete evidence.

Can we expect similar projects after a survey tour of the Singapore business delegation?

We cannot compare in scale, but we can expect big and worthy projects.

Thank you for the interview.

Recently, via the visit of Emperor and Empress of Japan, a number of Japanese enterprises came to work with the provincial leaders to prepare for further cooperation. Before that, German and Taiwan business delegations also came to Hue to survey and visit some places where the province is calling for investment. The German business delegation committed themselves to work on a high-grade glasspowder production project at Phong Dien in late March. Earlier, at the end of 2016, the German PSH Group came to Hue to work and sign a contract to invest and manage the Mediterranean luxury resort project with the Vicoland Group.
By Tam Hue
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