Remarks by H.E. Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung at the Vietnam - Euromoney Global Investment Forum

Friday, 02 October 2015
On September 30th 2015, the Ministry of Planning and Investment in coordination with Euromoney held Vietnam Global Investment Forum in Hanoi with over 500 delegates. Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung attended and had an important speech at the Forum.

Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung at the Vietnam Global Investment Forum. Photo: Duc Trung
(MPI Portal)

Mr. Tony Shale, Chief Executive Officer for Asia, Euromoney Institutional Investor PLC,

Distinguished participants,

Ladies and gentlemen,

On behalf of the Government of Viet Nam, I warmly welcome leaders of the world and region’s top businesses and all of you to the Viet Nam Global Investment Forum co-hosted by Ministry of Planning and Investment of Viet Nam and Euromoney in the beautiful capitol city Ha Noi.

Ladies and gentlemen,

After 30 years of carrying out reform, from an agricultural, backward and under-developed country devastated by wars, Viet Nam has risen to join the group of middle-income developing countries. During the 1986-2010 period, Viet Nam sustained high GDP growth rates, averaging nearly 7% per annum. Despite difficulties caused by the global economic downturn, during 2011-2015, Vietnam managed to achieve growth of 6 % with year-on-year increase. This year, the economy is expected to expand by 6.5%, the highest level since 2011. Vietnam was among a few countries that could maintain fairly high positive growth, consistently throughout this period. The economy’s size and potential have been constantly expanding. The socio-economic infrastructure kept developing rapidly. Social welfare and people’s living standard were constantly improved. The Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) Report published in New York this month showed that Viet Nam has fulfilled ahead of schedule many MDGs.

The Vietnamese economy is entering a new cycle characterized by macro-economic stability, higher growth and low inflation. The country is also heading to the sustainable development goals and a GDP growth rate of 6.5-7% between 2016 and 2020. Trade volume is expected to increase by 12-15% per annum, and amount to US$ 600 billion by 2020. The wellbeing of 90 million Vietnamese will be further improved. Purchase power and market size will be on the rise. By the end of 2015, GDP per capita is expected to reach US$ 2,200 or equal to over US$ 5,600 on the PPP basis. To date, total registered FDI in Viet Nam is around US$ 270 billion with over 19,000 operating projects by investors from 105 countries and territories; US$ 135 billion have been disbursed. A number of MNCs, many of which come from Europe, are very successful in Viet Nam.

Distinguished participants,

Ladies and gentlemen,

In carrying out the policy of proactive international integration, Viet Nam is working with the other member countries to realize the ASEAN Economic Community later this year. This will be a vibrant market of high economic growth with a population of 625 million people, and total GDP of US$ 2,500 billion, which is expected to amount to US$ 10,000 billion by 2030. Before 2015, Viet Nam signed 8 Free Trade Agreements (FTAs). And earlier this year, two other FTAs were concluded with ROK and Eurasian Economic Union. We are the first ASEAN country to conclude negotiations on an FTA with the EU, which is scheduled for signing later this year. We have basically concluded the TPP negotiations with 11 partners. The FTAs, once in place, will open up a vast space for free trade between Viet Nam and 55 partners, including all members of the G7 and 15 members of the G20.

Nevertheless, we understand that such achievements are far from reaching the potentials of Vietnam, and the current investment and business environment in Viet Nam is still facing many shortcomings and difficulties. The Vietnamese Government is taking active and integrated measures to overcome challenges and better harness the opportunities for promoting rapid and sustainable growth in the coming years.

Distinguished participants,

Ladies and gentlemen,

At the forum today, you will be discussing a number of topics, namely accelerating growth, FDI outlook, the banking reform, capital market development, SOEs equitization, the real estate sector, agriculture, and financing infrastructure and power supply. Those are very meaningful and substantive matters for Viet Nam’s economic development strategy and demands. In this regard, I would like to underscore some important issues as follows:

First, on the business and investment environment, Vietnam is working very hard to improve the market economy institution with an emphasis on the legal and administrative frameworks, especially the enforcement. Efforts will also be undertaken to enhance the quality of human resources and promote infrastructure development. Many important legal documents have now taken effect, including the Investment Law, Enterprise Law, Housing Law, Real Estate Business Law, Decree on Public-Private Partnership, Decree on Securities. In addition, many other laws are being drafted and will be promulgated in 2016, providing a number of concrete incentives. We are striving to bring the criteria on the business environment (on tax, customs, social security, construction, land, power access, etc.) to the level of ASEAN-4 in 2016. In fact, we might even achieve this target by the end of this year. In the time to come, the signing and implementation of new-generation Free Trade Agreements with higher standards such as the TPP and the Vietnam-EU FTA will make the investment and business environment in Vietnam more favourable and competitive in the region.

Second, regarding the infrastructure development under the Public-Private Partnership (PPP), the Vietnamese Government considers a uniform infrastructure system a breakthrough in our development strategy. We will continue with the reform of the public investment programme that helps facilitate domestic and foreign private businesses’ participation in the infrastructure development with priority given to high-tech and supporting industry projects. The decree on PPP has taken effect since April this year will create a momentum for increasing private investment, especially FDI. Vietnam is updating and will soon publish the List of PPP projects calling for investment in such fields as transport infrastructure, energy, water supply, waste management, urban infrastructure, etc.

Third, on the equitization of state-owned enterprises, throughout the 20-year process of restructuring and equitization, the initial number of 12,000 state-owned enterprises have declined by over 90%. After equitization, state-owned enterprizes operate at the same playing field with other businesses. Most of them have been able to expand in size and generate profit. Currently, the Vietnamese Government puts great emphasis on restructuring major state-owned Groups and Corporations. From 2011 to September 2015, we have equitized nearly 350 enterprises and will continue to promote this process. In the future, more equitized state-owned enterprise will go public and this is a great opportunity for foreign investors to explore M & A opportunities. Foreign businesses are welcomed to participate in the SOEs equitization and M&A.

Fourth, regarding the Vietnamese financial market, this is still a modest market, and Vietnam continues to improve policies and add more services in line with international standards. We have put in place regulations to expand the room for foreign investors to participate in the Vietnamese securities markets, invest in sovereign and corporate bonds. Foreign ownership in securities firms has been lifted from 49% to 100% together with other provisions more favorable to foreign investors.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

This forum takes place when the world and Vietnamese economy are facing both opportunities and challenges. As the Government is making every effort to fully tap the economic potentials of Vietnam, foreign businesses are welcomed to do business in Vietnam on a long-term basis. Vietnam always stresses that: your success is our success. For EU firms, we are all very pleased with the coming conclusion of the EU-Vietnam Free Trade Agreement, which will open up more opportunities for successful cooperation.

In that light, we wish to hear constructive comments from the business community in an open dialogue and that will ensure our success in the coming time.

I wish you all health, happiness and success. Thank you!

Van Hai (Source: MPI Portal)

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