The southern hub of Ho Chi Minh City aims to attract 2.5 billion USD in foreign direct investment (FDI) this year, which is 20 percent higher than last year's figure.

According to the municipal Department of Planning and Investment, the top priority would be given to foreign-invested projects in high-value added industries such as engineering, electronics, IT and biological technologies; processing and manufacturing; banking and finance; telecommunication; real estate as well as tourism.

It added that the prioritised sources of foreign investment would be the US, Japan, Singapore, the Republic of Korea and Germany.

The goal was set based on the city's encouraging FDI investments in 2013 and in the first two months of this year as well, head of the department's investment registration division Le Thi Huynh Mai said.

In spite of the global and domestic economic difficulties, Mai said that last year, FDI in the city surged significantly by 52 percent to touch 2.08 billion USD. Of the total, 1.05 billion USD came from 477 newly-licensed projects, up 77 percent in terms of capital and 9.5 percent in the number of projects. The remainder came from 139 existing projects which added 1.03 billion USD to their capital.

Up to 46 new projects were granted investment licences during the period, up by 12.2 percent year on year, with a total registered capital of 164.3 million USD, up by 267.2 percent over last year.

The city started this year also with a significant amount of 217 million USD in FDI being registered in the past two months, which is 226 percent higher year on year.

Meanwhile, 14 ongoing projects were also allowed to increase their capital by 52.6 million USD.-VNA