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Six locations – Thua Thien Hue, Khanh Hoa, Quang Ninh, Lam Dong, Binh Thuan and Danang – were listed in 2011’s inspection plan by the Ministry of Planning and Investment (MPI) due to “careless investment licencing” and “low efficiency”.
As with Thua Thien Hue, many property developers registered to invest in tourism property projects in this central province from 2001-2004. However, just a few of the licenced projects got rolling.
According to statistics by Chan May-Lang Co Economic Zone (EZ) Authority the EZ is currently home to 35 tourism property projects, however, only nine projects are underway while many others remain on the drawing board, such as the Lap An Lagoon golf course tourism complex and Bai Chuoi resort.
Some other projects have seen little progress. For example, the Diana Resort, which was licenced in 2007 is now an empty space except for a hedge and a guard’s house.
Meanwhile the Lang Co Coastal Resort, licenced in 2006, has only constructed the project’s breakwater and the Xanh Lang resort, licenced in 2008, has only just built its foundation.
Deputy head of the Chan May-Lang Co EZ Authority Nguyen Hue attributed project delays to developers’ capital shortages and high bank lending rates.
Nevertheless at a recent Ho Chi Minh City-based meeting on tourism property projects, central provinces were still eagerly calling for investment.
In the Central Highlands’ province of Lam Dong, according to the provincial People’s Committee, there were 236 tourism property projects in Dalat city planned from 2006-2010 worth VND46.5 trillion ($2.32 billion) with a total registered capital of which 142 projects were licenced. However, just 65 projects are now in progress and only 19 projects were put into operation.
Around 30 projects worth more than VND7.5 trillion ($375 million) registered to invest in the Dalat-based Tuyen Lam Lake resort, however only 14 projects are in the development pipeline.
In mid-October 2010, Lam Dong People’s Committee made public a list of projects seeking investment from 2011-2020. However, a big tourism property project – the Prenn Lake resort, which covers up to 1,000 hectares – carved its name among 29 major prioritised investment projects.
Danang, also in the central region, takes the lead across the country in terms of villa and hotel density. Statistics show that there are more than 20 high-end resorts along Danang coast such as Furama Villas, Olalani and Vinpearl Danang. Of them, 14 projects will soon market 650 villas while around 9,300 apartments from other 20 projects will be launched within the next five to seven years.
Another central province, Khanh Hoa, is currently home to more than 80 tourism projects worth around VND30 trillion ($1.5 billion) in total investment capital. One mega-project, the 2,300ha North Cam Ranh Peninsula resort, which was expected to boost the province’s development, is causing a headache for the local government.
At this point of time, 30 projects have registered to invest in North Cam Ranh Peninsula resort with total investment of VND17 trillion ($850 million). Only five projects were given the go-ahead while the remainder is in the legal setup process. Earlier in 2007, the province withdrew licences of 20 tourism projects due to delays.
Northern Quang Ninh province has also popped up on MPI’s 2011 inspection plan with 64 holiday home and tourism property projects. Of which, 26 projects include sports and entertainment facilities, eco-resorts, food, cultural and historical sites and 38 projects pump capital into hotels, villas and holiday homes.
The southern province of Binh Thuan appeared on MPI’s inspection radar in 2011 and despite being a remote location with a low level of per capita income it has licenced as many as 12 golf course projects.
Statistics of the province’s Department of Planning and Investment indicate that only two golf courses are now operational while other projects are either on the drawing board or have seen little progress.
For example, South Fork golf course, which was licenced in 2004, Hon Rom, licenced in 2007 and Son My, licenced in 2006, saw delays because they were positioned in “black sand” areas. They will now have to wait until the black sand deposits are extracted.