The Central Highlands Steering Committee held a press conference on the region’s socio-economic development in the first five months of 2015 in Buon Ma Thuot city, Dak Lak province, on June 8.

Tran Viet Hung, deputy head of the committee, said during the reviewed period, the disbursement of the region’s total development investment capital was 2.6 trillion VND (148 million USD), mainly in rural infrastructure development, education, healthcare and water supply projects in specially difficult and border communes.

The region has over newly-established 1,150 businesses with a combined registered capital of 3.23 trillion VND, up 6.3 percent and 8 percent against the same period last year, respectively.

Its index of industrial production grew 8.5 percent year on year while agricultural production remained stable despite heavy impacts of droughts.

The Central Highland provinces have saw the expansion of industrial tree plantations with green, intensive production, and the increasing application of advanced technology in farming of fruits, tea, vegetable and flowers as well as fish and cow breeding.

Coffee is among the region’s key industrial crops, grown in a total area of more than 573,000 hectares or 88 percent of the country’s coffee-growing area.

Infrastructure development has been also received more attention with the priority given to the upgrade of the Ho Chi Minh Highway section which runs through the Central Highlands, Pleiku Airport, and National Roads 20, 28 and 26.

The region has attracted more than 212.75 trillion VND in social investment between 2011 and 2014, of which 35.8 percent came from the State budget, 19.3 percent from foreign businesses and the remainder from other sources, Hung noted. The investments were mainly pumped into projects on transportation, irrigation, industry, energy, telecommunication and rural infrastructure development, according to Hung.-VNA