With 131 operating foreign direct investment (FDI) projects valued at US$7.29 billion, Thai Nguyen province has become one of the leading destinations for foreign investors in the northern mountainous region.
According to statistics from the provincial Department of Planning and Investment, the flow of FDI into Thai Nguyen began to accelerate in 2012. In particular, when Samsung Group from the Republic of Korea started its project in the high-tech complex in the Yen Binh industrial zone in Pho Yen town in 2013, Thai Nguyen jumped to the first place among 63 cities and provinces nationwide in FDI attraction. In that year, the province absorbed more than US$3.4 billion in 22 newly-licensed projects.
Thanks to the spillover effect of the Samsung project, total FDI in Thai Nguyen during 2012-2017 rose 70 times compared to the 1993-2012 period.
General Director of Samsung Electronics Vietnam Shin Won-Hwan said at a recent investment promotion conference that strong support from the Vietnamese Government and abundant supply of labourers coupled with the good will of the province’s administration were the reasons why the group chose Thai Nguyen for its complex.
The foreign-invested sector has contributed to Thai Nguyen province’s economic development in the past years, with the gross regional domestic product (GRDP) expanding by an annual rate of over 12%, higher than the national average. In only three years, from 2015-2017, FDI firms contributed more than VND5.3 trillion to the province’s budget.
In addition, Thai Nguyen is among the few northern mountainous localities having export revenue reaching billions of USD. In 2017 alone, the province raked in US$25 billion from exports, a year-on-year increase of 30 percent.
Also, the FDI projects have created stable jobs for local workers and those in neighbouring provinces. Currently, more than 112,000 people working at FDI firms as compared to 10,200 in 2013.
Moreover, FDI projects have helped the province shift its industrial structure from metallurgy and mining to high-tech and support industries. In the recent five years, local industrial production grew at over 80% per year.
Director of the provincial Department of Planning and Investment Hoang Thai Cuong said that Thai Nguyen has been praised for its effective strategy to lure FDI from the RoK and some other foreign countries and territories like Japan, Singapore, and Taiwan (China).
However, the province is advised to work to attract more investments from European and American countries.