Chairman of Son La People's Committee Cam Ngoc Minh spoke with the Vietnam Business Forum about the northern mountainous province’s efforts in boosting provincial economic growth and attracting new investment.

*Could you tell us about the socio-economic development of Son La province in recent years?

Son La province has overcome difficulties and challenges to promote its socio-economic activities. The province has obtained many positive changes. In the first 6 months of 2014, the gross domestic product of the province increased by 8.93 percent over the same period of last year. The production of agriculture, forestry and fisheries rose by 3.06 percent, the industry and construction production increased by 11.14 percent while the services sector grew by 11.24 percent.

In addition, Son La has also established industrial areas such as Moc Chau, Phu Yen, and Muong La, creating fabourable conditions for investors. The province has accelerated economic restructuring towards sustainability and helped improve the quality of its labour force. Besides these achievements, the province is facing shortcomings in some areas, the implementation of the investment projects is still slow, the administrative reform has not really met the requirements.

*What direction and policies will you adopt to create favourable conditions for investors and improve the provincial competitiveness index (PCI)?

Son La province issued Decision 991/QD-UBND to improve the business environment and enhance the competitiveness of Son La province. The Decision aims to specify action plans and implement policies to create a favourable business environment in all economic sectors as well as develop the infrastructure system with a focus on the transportation system; promote the application of the information technology in all sectors and provide measures to improve the quality of the education and training. The province is positively improving the administrative reform procedures to reduce the time and cost for businesses.

The province will also review administrative procedures, especially the administrative procedures related to PCI indicators. The One –Stop -Shop administration model will be piloted in some departments and people's committees of the districts before the model will be expanded to all administrative agencies in the province. The province has also encouraged enterprises in all economic sectors to boost the technological innovation and the application of the information technology in the production and business activities in order to enhance the competitiveness.-VNA