Vietnam expects large-scale FDI projects

Although in the first four months of this year, registered foreign investment capital into Vietnam hit a record high, there was no large-scale project. According to experts from the Ministry of Planning and Investment, the first-billion-dollar project this year will possibly be a project from Hong Kong (China): Weijia Textiles Vina.
Weijia Textiles Vina specializing in producing products relating to garment industry will be built in Dong An 2 Industrial Park in Binh Duong Province.
In the list of firms which are in the process of completing investment procedure, there is a familiar name, Exxon Mobil Corporation, with an investment plan of US$4.6 billion. Bac Lieu Province has been asking the Ministry of Industry and Trade to consider adding Bac Lieu Liquefied Natural Gas Power Plant by the US investor Energy Capital to the Power Planning VII with an investment capital of $4.3 billion. The underprivileged province expects that the 3,200-mega-watt power plant will supplement around VND3 trillion annually to its budget.
Other large-scale projects, including the 500-million-dollar project of Korean investor Hana Micron and additional investments of $610 million and $200 million by Apparel Far Eastern and Meiko Electronics respectively also have been signaling positively.
Vietnam is still able to expect more as the tendency to move investment to the country to wait in front for incentives from the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership as well as to avert negative impacts caused by tension of the trade war between the US and China which has become more visible.
Recently, LG Group announced that it will stop production of smartphones in South Korea by the end of this year to shift production at its factories in Hai Phong City in Vietnam. In fact, it is not unexpected because the company has had a plan to land in Vietnam since it spent $1.5 billion to build a factory in Hai Phong City in 2013. Following Samsung, LG is in the progress to make Vietnam become its largest factory in the world.
In agricultural sector, after investing $1 billion in Vietnam since 1993, CP Foods – a subsidiary of Charoen Pokphand Foods – will continue to pour more than $200 million to build a pork and poultry meat export center in Vietnam.
However, there are several risks amid optimistic signs. Minister of Finance Dinh Tien Dung admitted that there are transfer pricing practices at FDI companies. This serious issue should be prevented from the investment and production stages. If there is no solution to supervise and confirm that foreign investment capital has actually flowed into Vietnam to establish effective businesses and if the government allows firms to declare their capital, make investment and depreciation by themselves, the risk of losing tax will be extremely high. Thus, attracting lots of foreign investment capital is just a beginning.

By Anh Thu – Translated by Thuy Doan

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