The Government of Vietnam always encourages, protects and creates favorable conditions for organizations and individuals both in and outside the country to invest in Vietnam and the Mekong Delta region in particular.
Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung delivered this message at a conference on investment and development in the Mekong Delta, which opened in Can Tho city on September 6 with the attendance of more than 700 domestic and foreign delegates.
The leader said he hoped that the conference would serve as an opportunity for concerned agencies and the business community to update Vietnam’s investment policies, projects calling for investment, as well as obstacles hindering business and investment activities.
PM Dung urged the regional cities and provinces to work closely together on mechanisms and policies to attract more investment, fully tap local potential and strengths and mobilize all internal and external resources so as to further foster the region’s socio-economic development and improve local people’s living conditions.
The government has always paid special attention to the Mekong Delta’s development through support and facilitation policies such as a socio-economic development scheme until 2015 with a vision through 2025 and a construction plan for the region until 2020 with a vision through 2050, he said.
The government also approved a plan to turn the Mekong Delta into a key economic region, under which the region is defined as a centre for rice growing, aquaculture and aquatic product processing of the whole country and a major hub of energy, the PM added.
The Mekong Delta encompasses 13 cities and provinces which cover an area of 4 million hectares and boast a population of approximately 18 million, accounting for 21 percent of the country’s total population.
The region shares a 330-km border with Cambodia and has a 700-km coastline and territory waters of 360,000 sq.km. It contributes around 18 percent to the nation’s gross domestic product (GDP) each year.
The Mekong Delta is the largest rice granary and aquaculture region in Vietnam, making up 50 percent of the country’s rice output and 52 percent of the aquatic product volume. It accounts for up to 90 percent of the nation’s rice export volume and 60 percent of the aquatic product export turnover each year.
During the 2006-2010 period, the region has recorded an annual average GDP growth rate of between 10-12 percent, of which industry and service have contributed an increasing proportion.
It has also reaped a broad range of achievements in terms of infrastructure, health care, education and poverty reduction, while maintaining national defense, security and social order.
However, the region is still facing shortcomings and challenges, including the tardy application of scientific and technological advances in production, the poor competitiveness of products and businesses, the shortage of high-quality human resources and the ineffective attraction of foreign investment.