Deputy PM Trinh Dinh Dung visits Vingroup's Vinfast automobile production project (Source: VNA)

Hai Phong (VNA)
– Deputy Prime Minister Trinh Dinh Dung has urged the northern port city of Hai Phong to fully tap its potential and advantages in order to boost socio-economic development, thus creating an impetus for the northern key economic region.

During a working session with the municipal authorities in the city on March 2, Deputy PM Dung said the city has several large and sustainable industrial and service projects, which are expected to help Hai Phong achieve high growth.

The city needs to continue restructuring its economy in tandem with reviewing and adjusting its planning scheme, with a focus placed on key industrial sectors, such as automobile production, sea tourism, urban infrastructure, economic and industrial zones, seaports and logistic services, he said.

Deputy PM Dung also visited the Hai Phong-based VinFast automobile production factory, where he spoke highly of the project investor Vingroup’s resolve to concentrate resources on producing Vietnam-branded automobiles.

The Deputy PM highlighted great potential of the domestic automobile market with over 90 million people and increasing incomes, and stressed that the sector’s localisation rate remains low.

The government has actively worked with relevant ministries and sectors to address difficulties facing the automobile industry, Dung said, affirming that the Government supports the development of the sector, thus creating a premise for the stronger growth of other supporting industries.

Developing the automobile industry will create jobs, increase State budget collection, boost economic growth, and reduce trade deficit, he noted.

The government hopes that Vietnam will soon have its own automobile brands which are able to compete with imported vehicles in terms of quality, design, features and prices, he said.

Dung urged the Vingroup to focus more on developing supporting businesses, increasing the localisation rate, and accelerating the construction progress of the factory and development of products.

The Deputy PM also asked ministries, sectors to complete relevant legal frameworks to facilitate domestic investments in the automobile sector, with priorities given to the supporting industry.

During his working visit, Deputy PM Dung also inspected the construction of Lach Huyen Port on Cat Hai island in Cat Hai district, affirming that the project aims to develop seaport services, thus meeting the international and domestic demand, as well as facilitating the city’s growth.

He urged contractors to accelerate the construction so that the project can be put into operation on schedule.

The Lach Huyen Port project, with a total investment of over 6.2 trillion VND (273.1 million USD), was launched on May 12, 2016. It is expected to be completed by April 2018 and put into operation by May 12, 2018.

According to the city’s report, Hai Phong achieved all set economic targets in 2017. The local investment condition continued seeing improvements. Hai Phong was considered one of the country’s most attractive destinations for investors, with strongly improved transport and urban infrastructure. In the year, the cross-sea bridge of Tan Vu-Lach Huyen was inaugurated, together with other key roads and bridges.

In the first two months of 2018, the city’s industrial production index went up 20.61 percent year on year. Its export revenue reached 1.14 billion USD, up 24.14 percent. Up to 16 million tonnes of cargo were handled at the Hai Phong Port, up 18.34 percent. It contributed over 9.1 trillion VND (400 million USD) to the State budget.-VNA