Trade surplus in the southern province of Binh Duong reached 591 million USD in the first quarter.

Exported goods were worth a total of 4.22 billion USD in value, an annual increase of 15.6 percent. The foreign-invested sector contributed 81.8 percent to the sum, up 16 percent from 2014.

Major exports maintained momentum, including woodwork products, apparel, footwear, handicrafts and electronic devices.

Meanwhile, Binh Duong imported 3.63 billion USD worth of commodities, a 15.5 percent rise compared to the same period last year. The foreign sector accounted for 79.2 percent of total import value.

According to the provincial People's Committee, State initiatives to clear business hurdles took effect in Q1, with enterprises recording strong and stable operations.

Most businesses have already signed goods contracts for the second quarter, while some larger companies have completed deals for the third quarter.

Binh Duong recorded Q1 industrial production value of almost 50 trillion VND (235.3 million USD), up 11.2 percent year on year.

Also in the reviewed period, the province attracted 321million USD from foreign direct investment (FDI) in 63 existing and new projects, bringing the number of FDI projects in Binh Duong so far to 2,449 projects with the total registered investment to 20.7 billion USD.

The province aims to attract one billion USD from FDI in 2015. To that end, the province will focus on industries with high levels of technology and added value, while creating favourable conditions for investors in terms of site clearance, overall social technological infrastructure and administrative reform.

During the first months of 2015, several foreign business groups have conducted field research in the province to seek business opportunities.

Binh Duong, together with Dong Nai, Tay Ninh, Ba Ria-Vung Tau, Binh Phuoc, Long An, and Tien Giang provinces, and HCM City, form Vietnam's southern economic region.-VNA