Disbursements of foreign direct investment in the first month of the year rose by 5 per cent over the same month last year to a total of $420 million, according to the Foreign Investment Agency (FIA).
Newly registered capital also skyrocketed by 74 per cent to $281.4 million. Thirty-seven new projects accounted for $257 million of the total, while additional capital in nine existing projects accounted for the rest.
Registered capital mainly went to processing and manufacturing industries. With a total registered capital of $202.9 million, the industries accounted for up to more than 72 per cent of the country's total registered capital.
Among 11 cities and provinces attracting foreign investment in January, the southern province of Dong Nai topped the list with registered capital of nearly $108 million, followed by the northern city of Hai Phong with $66.4 million and southern Binh Duong Province with $61.6 million.
Japan was the leading source of foreign investment in January, responsible for registered capital of $157.7 million, followed by Thailand with $54.2 million and France with $20 million.
Viet Nam expected to attract $13-14 billion in foreign direct investment (FDI) this year, said FIA director Do Nhat Hoang.
"Besides focusing on quantity, the ministry would issue additional policies to attract FDI to high-tech industries and to improve the quality and effectiveness of FDI overall," Hoang said.
FDI would also be prioritised based upon the demand in each sector and region, as well as based upon the needs of foreign partners, he said.
Removing barriers to investors involved in the services sector, which is underdeveloped in Viet Nam, while limiting inappropriate projects, would be priorities, he added.
The country last year licensed 1,100 new foreign-invested projects, while another 435 existing projects increased their registered capital.
Total FDI reached $13 billion, of which $9.1 billion was registered in the processing and manufacturing industries. Japan was the leading source of investment, accounting for $5.13 billion or 39.5 per cent of total FDI.
Experts have urged relevant authorities to get into the race to attract FDI since the competition with other countries in the region was heating up.
Japan has poured billions of dollars into Myanmar, an opening market attracting considerable global attention. Japan also has more than 7,000 businesses operating in Thailand, much higher than the 1,500 registered in Viet Nam.
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