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 The Ministry of PlaCommittee to better manage FDInning and Investment (MPI) has collected ideas on a proposal to establish a dedicated national-level steering committee on foreign investment.

The proposal on the committee, which aims to replace a decentralised model, comes after foreign investment saw a substantial decline during the past year. The move also aims to more efficiently resolve investors’ difficulties, thus improving management of Foreign Direct Investment (FDI).

The proposal was submitted in the draft foreign direct investment attraction strategy until 2020.

Accordingly, a deputy prime minister would act as the head of the committee with the MPI minister as vice chair and representatives from various ministries and sectors.

Deputy Minister Dao Quang Thu said the committee would resolve investor difficulties that ministries and localities could not settle.

Thu said ministries and localities would have a special department for FDI based on a one-shop principle on handling issues related to investment promotion, licences and management.

The department would be responsible for regular collection, analysis and evaluation of investment figures for FDI management.

He said the model has received support from ministries and localities.

Ngo Sy Bich, head of northern Bac Ninh Provincial Industrial Parks Management Authority, said the model would help improve work on luring FDI by localities, requiring them to be responsible to the government for FDI projects in their provinces.

MPI experts said there were two investment management models in the regions. The first model has a management body for both domestic and foreign investment in Viet Nam without a special office for FDI activities.

The model has simple and integrated procedures for different types of investors. However, authorities would face difficulties in resolving problems related to investment projects.

The second model has a special office on FDI management that can quickly settle investment procedures. Its shortcoming are that separation between domestic and foreign investment management results in an imbalance between the two investment flows.

It was difficult to obtain exact figures on FDI attraction as localities had not actively co-operated in this area with the ministry.

Viet Nam’s first Law on Foreign Investment was enacted in 1987. FDI into the country was managed wholly by the central government until 2004. However, in 2004 the government issued Resolution 08/2004/NQ-CP on boosting decentralised administration between the central government and local authorities in provinces and cities, giving localities more power in luring and managing FDI.

The resolution has helped localities improve their investment environment, saving time and costs for investors. By the end of last month, Viet Nam attracted FDI investment of more than US$209 billion, but foreign investment in Viet Nam has dropped by about a third since September 2011.

However, the decentralised model also exposed shortcomings as work on luring investment by localities was sometimes not in line with the wider region’s planning strategies.

VietNamNet/VNS

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