Hau Giang province in the Mekong Delta region has scored upbeat results in regard to industrial zone and cluster development over the years. Its recent efforts to amplify space and create a pro-business environment with a raft of practical measures are expected to put the province on an even stronger sustainable development path moving forward.
While many localities throughout the country have established and run industrial zones (IZs) for a long time, Hau Giang started from the back of the pack due to being a newer locality established after the separation of Can Tho city in 2004. As a result, it was not until 2007 that the 290-hectare Song Hau IZ based in Chau Thanh district became the first such zone established there.
Today, Hau Giang is home to two IZs and four industrial clusters (ICs) covering over 900ha, along with Song Hau Industrial Zone Management Centre and Song Hau Power Centre.
Hau Giang’s IZs and ICs enjoy convenient locations for water and land transport. As for the road system, the zones are adjacent to the South Song Hau national highway, national highways 1 and 61C, and more, conveniently connecting with localities in the Mekong Delta as well as Ho Chi Minh City.
In terms of waterways, its adjacence to the Hau River, the Ba Lang River, Xa No Canal, and in proximity to international seaport systems like Vinalines and Cai Cui ports make it convenient for transporting raw materials and goods for production and export.
By air, Hau Giang’s IZs and ICs are only 15-20km from Can Tho International Airport.
In addition to a convenient location, Hau Giang’s IZs and ICs are located in the area of abundant agricultural and seafood raw materials such as rice, fruit and vegetables, and shrimp and other fish. In addition, they are located in areas with extremely difficult socioeconomic conditions, and so are entitled to the highest incentives according to regulations.
All administrative procedures when investing in these facilities are following a one-stop-shop mechanism, and all procedures are carried out quickly and efficiently through Hau Giang Industrial Zones Management Authority.
Under the motto “The success and growth of enterprises bring the province’s sustainable development”, the management authority creates favourable conditions for investors to save time and costs, from the initial stages until the projects come into operation.
Leaders of the province, the management authority, sectors and departments, and the people’s committees in districts and towns regularly hold dialogues with investors to help them overcome hurdles, especially in site clearance.
Despite its late presence, and with geographical advantages, convenient transport infrastructure, and preferential policies as well as an open investment environment, Hau Giang has scored impressive results when it comes to attracting investment into local IZs and ICs.
Currently, Song Hau IZ’s phase 1 has filled up more than 90 per cent of industrial land, and the occupancy rate at Tan Phu Thanh IZ has surpassed 73 per cent. Notably, Hau Giang’s IZs and ICs are currently ranked second in the region, only behind Long An province – the locality adjacent to Ho Chi Minh City – in terms of investment capital attraction.
According to a recent report by Hau Giang People’s Committee, the province’s IZs and ICs are home to 106 projects currently, of which 60 have been put into operation, with total domestic capital of VND76.2 trillion ($3.31 billion) and $3.8 billion as foreign investment capital.
In particular, with great efforts in investment attraction, the IZs and ICs managed by the province has attracted 73 projects, including 12 foreign-invested ventures, with the total registered capital of VND74.3 trillion ($3.23 billion) and $3.8 billion, respectively. Meanwhile, the ICs managed by the district level have lured in 33 projects with the total registered investment capital of VND1.87 trillion ($81.2 million).
Over the years, the province’s IZs and ICs have made positive contributions to local socioeconomic development. Last year, enterprises there created an industrial production value accounting for 68 per cent of the province’s total. Meanwhile, export value touched $531.6 million, accounting for 79 per cent of the province’s total, and import value came to $342.5 million, making up over 87 per cent of the provincial total.
Budget revenues from businesses based in the zones made up 16.7 per cent of the province’s total (from domestic sources). The zones and clusters have also been creating jobs for more than 25,000 workers in the province and from neighbouring locations.
New IZ construction proposed
In the medium-term public investment plan for the 2021-2025 period, many key works and projects regarding transport infrastructure will be in the development pipeline in the Mekong Delta region, such as Can Tho-Ca Mau and Chau Doc-Can Tho-Soc Trang expressways.
Besides that, several projects to upgrade and expand some national highways in the region are also under construction. These would not only help remove traffic congestion but also create an important impetus for localities in the region to further attract investment.
As one of the bright spots in funding attraction in the region, and also one of the localities directly benefiting from the aforementioned projects, Hau Giang would further retain its appeal to investors.
However, currently, the remaining land fund to call for investment into industrial production in the province is scarce.
In order to create a cleared land fund to effectively avail of funding opportunities, Hau Giang Industrial Zones Management Authority has proposed the provincial people’s committee to ask the Ministry of Planning and Investment to add the planning of 120ha Dong Phu IZ to Vietnam IZ development planning.
In addition, the authority has also advised Hau Giang People’s Committee to develop preferential mechanisms and policies on capital sources for site clearance and IZ/IC infrastructure construction to woo investors.
Nguyen Phong Minh, director of Hau Giang Industrial Zones Management Authority, said the committee has assigned the authority to work on a project to supplement IZ development planning towards 2030 to the national planning, in which the province would develop 12 new IZs with a total area of over 5,438ha.
Accordingly, Chau Thanh district would host seven IZs, including the 120ha Dong Phu IZ, phase 2 of the 290ha Dong Phu IZ, and the 334ha Dong Phu IZ’s third phase, among others. Chau Thanh A district would host the planning of Nhon Nghia A IZ, phase 2 of Tan Phu Thanh IZ, and also Tan Hoa IZ. Meanwhile, Phung Hiep district would accommodate the planning of Long Thanh IZ and Nga Bay city will home the planning of the 400ha Tan Thanh IZ.
Minh added that, in parallel with that proposed planning, the authority has proposed six areas adjacent to the IZs for building urban service areas, residential areas, and social housing serving the IZs in the districts of Chau Thanh, Chau Thanh A, and Phung Hiep.
By Huu Phuc, VIR