Da Nang seeks EU investment hinh anh 1A ship is built at Da Nang-based Song Thu Ship-yard building Corporation. Ship-building is one of hi-tech industries that the city want to lure more investment from EU (Source: VNA)

Da Nang (VNA) - The central city of Da Nang has been compiling simplified investment procedures to support European businesses with more transparency and a reduction in informal charges.

Speaking at the Whitebook Briefing 2018 between representatives of EuroCham, European businesses and the city’s leadership on June 14, Deputy Director of the city’s Investment Promotion Agency Huynh Thi Lien Phuong said new procedures will be introduced later this year, helping European investors to obtain investment licenses, clear land and understand tax and customs regulations.

She said Da Nang has been working hard on administrative reform while promoting 2018 as The Year of Investment Attraction.

Phuong said the city will offer cooperative opportunities to European partners and local colleges to boost education, information and communication technology (ICT) and human resources training.

Chairman of the municipal People’s Committee Huynh Duc Tho said the city will create favourable conditions for investors and tourists from the EU.

He said Da Nang and EuroCham have been cooperating well to promote the city’s investment environment.

EuroCham’s Co-chairman Denis Brunetti said: “EuroCham and Da Nang have been cooperating closely for the past two years, and that is also due to the excellent work of our local EuroCham central Vietnam delegates.”

The local government understands that EuroCham members and European business at large could be the best partners for their investment strategy vision over the next few years, betting on excellence in ICT, tourism, education and other value-added sectors – in which European businesses are global leaders, he added.

Brunetti also introduced the focus and content of the Whitebook 2018 at the meeting, highlighting its most important sectoral and cross-sectoral issues and recommendations, ranging from important regulations on distribution and customs, to calls for greater enforcement of sustainable practices among businesses in Vietnam.

The Whitebook 2018 was officially launched in Hanoi.

Jose Sanchez-Barroso Gonzalez, Vice Honorary Consul of Spain in Da Nang, suggested more direct flights from Europe to Da Nang with connections to popular destinations in central Vietnam and Southeast Asia.

He said Da Nang should connect with Hoi An, Hue and Quang Ngai to offer extension stays for European tourists, and Da Nang could also become a base for connections with Siem Reap, Luang Prabang, Bali and Phuket.

Gonzalez said Da Nang should develop a master plan for tourism development that focuses on sustainable business and a ‘green’ environment.

Dang Ngoc Hai, branch director of Axon Active Vietnam, said the city should consider how it can reduce training times for ICT students while improving the quality of students to meet the increasing demand for manpower in the IT sector.

He also said that English language skills could help IT students get jobs for foreign companies in Da Nang.

Nguyen Hai Minh, the tax and legal partner at Mazars Vietnam, said local authorites should apply international standards when it comes to tax and transfer pricing to ease pressure on the tax system.

He said support measures for SMEs and start-ups should also be implemented.

There are currently 73 EU-backed FDI projects in Da Nang worth 219 million USD. French investors account for 40.5 percent of FDI investment from the EU, with 21 projects in the city.

Import-export turnover between the city and the EU reached 316 million USD in 2017.-VNA