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09:00 | 18/10/2010
VIR’s Kieu Linh talks with Ha Sy San, vice director of Bac Ninh Provincial Department of Industry and Trade, about the local industrial development potential.
Increasing amounts of skilled workers are making the province their home

What are Bac Ninh province’s most significant advantages for industrial development?

Bac Ninh province has comparative industrial development advantages as follows.

Mr Ha Sy San

First, we have a favourable geographical location as the province belongs to the northern key economic zone and the economic triangle of Hanoi-Haiphong-Quang Ninh, making it a bridge linking Hanoi with northern midland provinces, northern mountainous provinces and China.

Bac Ninh has become the satellite of Hanoi by widening centres of industrial production, service-trade, finance and culture-tourism in its urban expansion strategy towards the northeast.

Second, the province has now become a destination for domestic and foreign investors through implementing programmes and policies on investment attraction synchronously and effectively.

In 2009, Bac Ninh’s provincial competitiveness index (PCI) was ranked the 10th nationwide, and second in the Red River Delta and central northern region.

Third, Bac Ninh’s infrastructure system of inland, waterway and railway has developed quickly in the recent years, which is an important factor for socio-economic development, creating a strong driving force for attracting investment in the local industrial sector. The province is only 30 kilometres from Noi Bai International Airport, about 120km from Lang Son border gate, 100km from Quang Ninh province and Haiphong city.  

Fourth, the power supply system in the province has been improved steadily. Bac Ninh has worked out the power development plan until 2015, with a vision toward 2020. The national grid electricity system has now reached all planned industrial parks across the province.

Fifth, banking and telecom services are available everywhere in Bac Ninh, satisfying the demand of investors.

Sixth, the education and training system has developed rapidly at all levels. Currently, Bac Ninh is home to seven colleges and universities, and 23 vocational training schools. Skilled workers account for 31.5 per cent of the total provincial workforce.

Last, Bac Ninh has been developing 15 integrated industrial parks with total planned area of 7,525 hectares (6,541ha for industrial parks and 984ha for urban zones). Developing industrial parks is considered a breakthrough for the provincial socio-economic development, accelerating its industrialisation-modernisation process.

So far, 15 countries and territories have invested in Bac Ninh with big projects being poured into the fields of electricity, electronics, telecoms and hi-tech such as Canon, Samsung, Foxconn, ABB and others. In addition, Bac Ninh has now 26 industrial clusters, covering  654ha. The province is developing additional 17 clusters until 2020, raising the total number of clusters to 43, covering total planned area of 1,310 hectares.

What are Bac Ninh province’s prominent industrial achievements over the past time?

Bac Ninh has targeted to become an industrialised province by 2015. The provincial economic structure is shifting towards industrialisation with a rapid rise in the ratio of industry and service in the local economy. Over the past years, Bac Ninh has gained a very high annual industrial growth rate, contributing largely to provincial gross domestic production (GDP).

During 2005-2010, the provincial industrial production value has surged 36.6 per cent annual on average, bringing Bac Ninh into the group of Red River Delta provinces with the highest industrial growth rate. In 2010, the province is estimated to fetch industrial production value of VND32 trillion ($1.7 billion), a 4.7-fold increase against 2005 and surpassed the year’s target by 59.1 per cent. The ratio of industry in the provincial GDP reached 56.5 per cent in 2009.

Besides, industrial production facilities in Bac Ninh have increased fast over the past years, from 569 in 2005 to 1,720 in 2009 (comprising 18 state-owned enterprises, 1,606 private businesses and 96 foreign-invested ones), creating jobs for 88,403 people.   

In spite of the high growth rate,  frankly speaking, Bac Ninh province’s industrial sector is facing several difficulties and challenges.

Could you specify which challenges Bac Ninh’s industrial sector is facing?

First of all, the local industry witnesses a high growth but not sustainable. While some other economic sectors fail to reach the industrial production value as planned, the foreign-invested sector accounts for half of the total provincial industrial production value and makes up more than 90 per cent of the province’s aggregate export turnover. When the global economic crisis occurred, this sector was hit hardest. Meanwhile, most of enterprises in Bac Ninh are small- and medium-sized with limited financial capability. Thus, the challenge must be addressed properly in the coming time in order for the province to reach more stable and sustainable economic growth.

Besides, as an aftermath of the global financial crisis, in 2009, the province faced big inventories due to difficulties in exports. We have to say that market forecast and analysis conducted by local state bodies and relevant functional agencies fell into weakness and shortcoming, failing to direct local enterprises in time of building business strategies to find out new export markets.

Furthermore, some projects in the province’s industrial parks are implemented at a snail’s pace while the occupancy rate at the local industrial parks is not yet high. Environmental pollution treatment facilities in industrial clusters have been carried out but their efficiency is not yet high.

In a bid to address the above-mentioned challenges, Bac Ninh province takes solutions as follows.

mContinuing with groups of solutions set out by the Vietnamese central government and the provincial people’s committee on preventing the return of high inflation and economic slowdown;

mAdjusting the overall industrial development plan, the plan on developing industrial parks and clusters, the development plan of each industry and building the rural industrial development plan.

mBoosting investment promotion activities and accelerating construction speed of infrastructure network of industrial parks and clusters in the province and trying to fill up 26 existing small-scaled industrial clusters. Bac Ninh province plans to raise the number of industrial clusters to 43 with total planned area of 1,310 hectares by 2015.

mApplying solutions under Bac Ninh province’s export-import project until 2010 approved by the provincial people’s committee, timely supporting and clearing hindrances relating to export-import procedures;

mQuickly carrying out the provincial power development plan during 2011-2015, with a vision toward 2020, so as to meet the demand for electricity for the province’s socio-economic development.  

mImplementing programmes on industrial promotion and industrial development consultancy approved by the provincial people’s committee in 2010 and during 2009-2012.

mImplementing the programme on developing non-agricultural industries in combination with rural development.

By Kieu Linh

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