Authorities of Phu Quoc island district, the southern province of Kien Giang, plan to employ a wide range of measures to invite more domestic and foreign investors into the locality this year.

Located on the Vietnam-Cambodia-Thailand marine economic corridor, Phu Quoc district covers more than with a population of over 100,000. It comprises 27 islands with Phu Quoc being the largest and dubbed the Pearl Island.

Local administration is making the best use of special mechanisms and policies given by the Government along with stepping up investment promotion programmes and tackling administrative and infrastructural difficulties.

The district is overhauling detailed development plans for functional areas and putting into use critical infrastructural facilities. At the same time, resident relocation and site clearance will be accelerated to ready the ground for licensed projects.

In 2014, the Kien Giang provincial People’s Committee licensed 53 projects in Phu Quoc district, including four FDI ones, with a total capital of nearly 65 trillion VND (3.09 billion USD). The district is currently home to 136 projects worth 140.21 trillion VND (6.67 billion USD) that cover more than 5,000 hectares, according to the Investment and Development Authority of Phu Quoc island.

Key facilities have been operational and proved effective such as Phu Quoc International Airport, An Thoi International Seaport, Bai Vong tourism port, and the 110kV undersea power cable linking mainland Ha Tien town and the island.

Meanwhile, large-scale tourism projects, including luxury hotels, are well underway in the tourist areas of Bai Truong, Bai Dai, Bai Khem, and Bai Sao. Local hotels have been upgraded to cater for over 7,500 visitors a day. Particularly, 300-ha Vinpearl Phu Quoc resort that houses a five-star hotel with 750 rooms, a 27-hole golf course, and a modern entertainment centre was inaugurated in 2014.

Vice Chairman of the Phu Quoc district People’s Committee Huynh Quang Hung attributed such projects to local development, elaborating that last year, local GDP grew by 27 percent from 2013 while per capita income topped 4,000 USD.

The district welcomed 586,000 tourist arrivals in 2014, including over 124,500 foreigners, representing respective increases of 40 and 32 percent from a year earlier. Therefore, it also saw an 84 percent rise in tourism earnings to more than 2.2 trillion VND (104.7 million USD), he added.

However, the Kien Giang People’s Committee also revoked licenses of 23 projects in Phu Quoc, including five FDI ones, due to their sluggish implementation, unconformity with the adjusted planning, and investors’ poor financial capacity, the official noted.

Kien Giang is working on procedures to recognise Phu Quoc Island as a provincially-run city in the time to come, which is a step in turning the island district into a special economic-administrative zone by 2020.

In the long term, the island district is envisioned to become an economic and political hub, a crucial frontier in national defence and security, and a crucial transit point for international travellers.-VNA