HCMC – Technology transfers from foreign firms to domestic partners have been as scant as ever, said Nguyen Thanh Phong, chairman of HCMC, at a meeting with foreign firms on April 21.
In 1995, foreign-invested companies contributed around 11% to gross domestic product (GDP) in the city, and the figure has now risen to 17%. Their exports account for a staggering 55.9% of the city’s total.
They have created direct jobs for about 270,000 workers and millions of indirect jobs.
However, the ratio of advanced technology transferred to local companies is woefully low, said chairman Phong, adding the city needs a far higher technology transfer ratio to bolster its growth.
Foreign-invested enterprises are actively involved in the real estate sector, making up a whopping 43% of their total investment pledges, he noted.
He said the municipal government will further improve the investment environment by making policies and mechanisms more predictable.
The city will halve the time for receipt and inspection of customs clearance documents, as well as goods checks. Similarly, it will speed up procedures for registration of housing and landed assets ownership to 14 days from the current 57 for companies.
The city has already set up an interdisciplinary working group to facilitate the handling of investment procedures.
According to the chairman, all businesses are equal before law, so the city government is committed not to criminalizing economic and civil cases. Local authorities will inspect companies once a year, and try to iron out difficulties faced by them.
The city leader said the local government has been working on special policies since the National Assembly issued Resolution 54 entitling the city to a special mechanism.
He pledged to create favorable conditions for foreign-invested companies to grow business. He wanted them to further transfer advanced technology, train manpower and share experience with local companies to help transform HCMC into a smart city.