In an effort to optimise national development, Vietnam is becoming more selective regarding foreign direct investment (FDI), screening and declining projects incompatible with long-term goals. Report by radio The Voice of Vietnam (VOV).

Deputy Minister of Planning and Investment Nguyen Van Trung at a recent media interview pointed to what was once Vietnam’s undiscerning hunger for FDI. Resources were needed to fuel the opening economy and address employment problems.

Trung said Vietnam’s focus has now narrowed to environmentally friendly, energy efficient projects that use advanced technology and operate in crucial areas like the support industries, manufacturing and processing industries, and agriculture.

He explained the shift in relation to finalising the legal framework for FDI, first and foremost of which involves revising the Enterprise Law and related legislation, weighing the advantages of decentralising FDI attraction and management, and fine-tuning policies promoting investment.

Vietnam needs to improve infrastructure, cultivate sufficiently qualified human resources, develop support industries, and accelerate capital disbursement.

The official stressed there is no discrimination between local and foreign businesses, saying FDI businesses operate in Vietnam, use a majority of Vietnamese workforce, and make large contributions to the State budget.

The FDI sector generates 25 percent of the country’s total social investment, 18 percent of GDP, 64–67 percent of export earnings, and 12–14 percent of State budget revenue. It creates millions of jobs and helps balance the country’s trade.

Rather than decrying the dominance of FDI businesses in head-to-head competition with domestic rivals, Trung welcomes it, suggesting Vietnamese businesses could use the push to hone their operations and shore up their independent market viability.

Vietnam attracted more than 20 billion USD in FDI during 2013 in the context of ongoing economic difficulties.-VNA