Construction Minister Nguyen Hong Quan has said the sector is working hard to achieve a double-digit growth rate for the second half of the year.

Quan told a sector meeting on July 10 that the target would be tough for construction to meet, despite its growth rate of 5.4 percent in the first half surpassing the average of 4.8 percent for the entire industrial and construction sector.

The sector has deployed 414 out of 563 approved projects with a combined disbursement of almost 13.1 trillion VND over the past six months.

He attributed the achievement to the Government’s stimulus package which offers businesses a subsidised interest rate of 4 percent on bank loans, instead of the normal rate of more than 10 percent.

Another factor is that a number of housing and urban development projects have made a comeback after a period of stagnation. Several real estate projects, especially social-welfare housing projects, have received licences and embarked on construction, providing more impetus for the sector.

The Housing and Urban Development Company (HUD) is leading the sector in infrastructure-urban-housing investment with 45 projects under construction and 18 others in the making. It has disbursed almost 2.4 trillion VND.

The ministry called on companies to intensify investment in major projects in cement, electricity, urban infrastructure and housing, and to speed up the tempo of construction.

Businesses are also urged to diversify forms of investment in and ownership of cement, hydro-power and urban development projects./.