Vietnam’s Fishing Industry Attracts US$310 Million in FDI

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Dec. 25 – With strong contributions from small and medium-sized enterprises, Vietnam’s fishing industry has so far attracted more than 70 foreign direct investment (FDI) projects amounting to US$310 million.

With a coastline of over 3,260 kilometers, 2,860 rivers and more than 3,000 islands and islets offshore, Vietnam’s landscape provides great natural opportunities for the fishery industry. In 2010, fish production contributed 10.14 percent to the country’s GDP.

Despite the success of achieving $US310 million in FDI, however, there is still unfulfilled potential in Vietnam’s fishing sector.

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Most FDI is focused on aquaculture, processing, feed and fries. Dinh Thi Thanh Huyen, an official with the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, says these are small projects with an average investment capitalization of over US$4.4 million each.

Although businesses from 18 countries and territories have invested in the industry, a strong foundation for sustainable growth is still lacking.

Huyen suggested localities implement a development strategy leading into 2020 to attract hi-tech and environmentally friendly FDI projects, as well as perfecting incentive investment policies. She advocates the use of Public-Private Partnership (PPP) projects as a means to diversify investment methods.

In an example of sustainable FDI development, Metro Cash & Carry Vietnam, a leading self-service wholesaler, has gone on to train and certify over 400 farmers and collectors while providing farmers with a basic income of VND9 million (US$425.83) per month during peak seasons.

To date, Metro Cash & Carry Vietnam receives 60 percent of its fish assortment from the Mekong Delta. The company has also set up the Can Tho fish platform, which services 19 Metro Cash & Carry stores across the country.

Motivated by a need to create a high quality supply chain for today’s increasingly health-conscious consumers, Metro Cash & Carry has teamed up with Fresh Studio Innovations to establish a certification system promoting good agricultural practices: the METROGAP model. The standards and certification requirements will focus on preventing chemical and microorganism contaminations in seafood products.

Looking forward, Huyen states that the General Department of Fisheries will coordinate with Metro Cash & Carry Vietnam, its partner Fresh Studio Innovations, as well as companies such as American agricultural giant Cargill, to develop fishing ponds under a pilot METROGAP model for 2,000 households in the Mekong Delta. In addition, there are plans to build a seafood development center in Can Tho and a fishing industry center in Kien Giang to further attract greater FDI.

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