Phu Yen overcomes obstacles for sustainable development

13:00 | 02/07/2019
Overcoming the plethora of obstacles and difficulties to achieve green and ­sustainable development has been a long-term strategic goal that many generations of leaders in the ­central coast province of Phu Yen have been pursuing with great ambition. Going from a purely agricultural province 30 years ago, agriculture has gradually narrowed to make room for other industries and services.
phu yen overcomes obstacles for sustainable development
Phu Yen is entering a new era of sustainable growth

With the advantage of nearly 200 kilometres of coastline featuring unique natural landscapes, located at the cultural and economic crossroads of the central coastal provinces and the Central Highlands, Phu Yen province has attracted big businesses and projects. Many guidelines, ­policies, and directions have set the province on the path of development, opening up prospects for the land of “yellow flowers on the green grass”.

Ready for a new development

Nguyen Chi Hien, Standing Deputy Chairman of the Phu Yen ­People’s Committee, shared with VIR that Phu Yen was once isolated from surrounding provinces by the ­dangerous Ca and Cu Mong passes on the north and south, rolling mountains and forests on the west, and the vast blue sea from the east. This terrain made it daunting for Phu Yen to achieve social and economic ­development.

Until now, the Party and the ­government, as well as the authorities and the people of Phu Yen have been united in working to remove ­bottlenecks that hinder their ­development, turning Phu Yen into an essential gateway to the whole region. If it can achieve these ambitions, Phu Yen will break out.

Hien said, “Sometimes ­difficulties are also a motivation, which is clearly defined in the ­resolutions of the Phu Yen Party Committee, focusing on developing ­important gateways for Phu Yen.” ­According to Hien, these gateways were the opening of Ca and Cu Mong pass tunnels, upgrading national highways connecting with the Central Highlands, and investing in seaport and airport systems to expand Phu Yen’s doors to development.

Hien says that the strategy has been concretised by big infrastructure projects, such as the opening of Ca and Cu Mong pass tunnels, which will be followed by many urban and tourism projects in the province. These infrastructure projects are the most positive signs for Phu Yen’s growth in recent years.

Tran Van Tan, deputy director of the Phu Yen Department of Planning and Investment, expressed his appreciation of the strategic steps Phu Yen has taken so far. He noted that if the bottlenecks in infrastructure were removed, Phu Yen could welcome far more domestic and international investors. He said that so far, the province has not been an outstanding destination attracting investment. However, if its potential of existing advantages could be unleashed and the momentum of new infrastructure projects carried on, Phu Yen’s future could be made all that much brighter. He also affirmed that with clearly defined directions, prosperous development will soon become reality.

“With important infrastructure projects such as Ca and Cu Mong pass tunnels, Tuy Hoa Airport, or tourism projects such as Rosa Alba Resort Phu Yen, the province believes all conditions are given to create a watershed in investment attraction for further development,” said Tan.

Opening opportunities

From an enterprise perspective, Tran Quang Bao, deputy general director of Sao Viet Tourism Co., Ltd., put a lot of faith in the local development orientation. He said that with the tourism potential of Phu Yen and the numerous places of attraction that house more than 23 national-level monuments and landscapes, the infrastructure system will help the province attract tourists by the droves from inside and outside the country, thereby activating investment capital into this field.

According to Bao, the biggest problem is infrastructure, and airports could play a decisive role in helping tourism to take off in Phu Yen. “The efforts of the leaders of Phu Yen in recent years to upgrade Tuy Hoa Airport and build a new airport terminal, has contributed significantly to the development of tourism in the province,” he said.

Lee Jung Un, chairman of New City Properties Development Co., Ltd., the investor of the Sun Rise Phu Yen Tourism Complex, said that Phu Yen’s wild landscapes share many similarities with South Korea. The questions are now on how to exploit this advantage, and how the world can visit the province. This is an issue that Phu Yen and investors have joined forces to resolve. He also said that it should follow in the footsteps of South Korea and promote its image by adding its scenery to the background of movies. Then surely visitors and investors around the world will approach the central province.

Recognising the development opportunities in Phu Yen, Ho Minh Hoang, general director of Deo Ca Investment JSC, the investor of Ca pass Tunnel, said that the infrastructure was throughly improved, and will bring great opportunities for the province. In addition, with the central position of the whole country, Phu Yen is shaping up to be a convenient investment destination. According to Hoang, the majority of investors always look to minimise costs when it comes to choosing an investment location. From this perspective, there is no reason Phu Yen could not draw in big projects in the near future.

Sustainable development

When asked about what the most important goal of Phu Yen is in the future, Pham Dai Duong, Chairman of the Phu Yen People’s Committee, affirmed that Phu Yen’s most important goal in the coming time is to achieve rapid and sustainable development.

According to Duong, previously, the province’s socio-economic development was hampered by its locked terrain which made interactions and exchanges with other localities difficult in all sectors. However, so far National Highway 1A, Ca and Cu Mong pass tunnels have been completed, thus breaking Phu Yen’s isolation.

Phu Yen borders the sea from the east; in the north and south it borders two strongly developing localities in marine tourism, Khanh Hoa and Binh Dinh, while in the west lies the Central Highlands, connected by National highways 25 and 29.

“This is a very favourable condition for Phu Yen to develop its ocean economy and link the region to develop, thereby promoting socio-economic development. Due to breakthroughs in infrastructure, natural conditions, and investment environment, Phu Yen has met the conditions for sustainable development,” Duong said.

However, Duong also says that there is a long way ahead to accomplishing this goal. First, according to the new Law on Planning, Phu Yen must focus on building provincial planning in the 2021-2030 period with vision until 2050 based on the regional planning and the national master plan. Currently, Phu Yen is reporting to the government, asking for permission to hire foreign consultants to work in tandem with domestic consultants to formulate the provincial planning.

This plan will set out clear development orientations for Phu Yen in each field and each region, with specific deadlines. While the details need to be filled in, it is certain that Phu Yen’s growth will be based on its strengths in agriculture, tourism, and especially sectors associated with the ocean economy. The goal of Phu Yen towards 2030 is to successfully develop ocean economic sectors, such as marine tourism and services, marine aquaculture and exploitation, maritime economy and coastal industry, renewable energy, and exploit other marine resources and minerals.

According to Duong, besides planning, Phu Yen needs to reform its administration by applying IT towards more transparency. This is an essential factor Phu Yen needs to enhance to attract domestic and foreign investment for the local socio-economic development.

By Thanh Pham

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