Illustrative image. (Photo: VNA)

Lam Dong (VNA) – A conference was held by the People’s Committee of the Central Highlands province of Lam Dong on December 26, discussing ways to draw in more “high-quality” foreign investment in the locality.

The conference on investment, trade and tourism promotion took place within the framework of the 7th Da Lat Flower Festival that is underway in Da Lat city.

The event gathered representatives from about 50 domestic and foreign companies in the province alongside a number of experts and scholars from ministries and state agencies.

Foreign investors have poured about 528 million USD into 103 projects in Lam Dong while the province has attracted approximately 115 trillion VND (5.06 billion USD) in 820 domestic projects, said Vice Chairman of the province’s People’s Committee Nguyen Van Yen, noting most of the projects are run by small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).

Yen voiced his concern over ineffectiveness of many foreign investment projects while many foreign investors have taken advantages of local investment promotion policies to occupy land for illegal purposes, like transfer of land use rights without permit.

To solve the issues, Lam Dong should give priority to big firms with good financial capability and sustainable investment, instead of SMEs, said Director of the Vietnam Institute of Economics Tran Dinh Thien. SMEs have limited funding so most of them want to earn profit at any cost, leaving severe impacts on local environment and economics, he explained.

Delegates to the conference suggested that the province should also further accelerate public administrative reforms and put more efforts to unleash its potential in tourism, hi-tech agriculture and biotechnology.-VNA