By the end of August 2009, in Dung Quat IZ, 147 projects had got approval for investment with the total registered investment capital of $10 billion. Of these projects, 113 had got investment licences with the total registered capital of $7.6 billion, and $4.1 billion has been implemented.

The shirt has become tight

Dung Quat is considered the most successful economic zone in the country. Within just three years, 2006-2008, Dung Quat was contributing nearly 50 percent to the local budget, turning Quang Ngai province from a low-income province in 2005 and before (500 billion dong in 2005) into a member of the one trillion dong club' in 2006 (the provinces which have the yearly budget of 1 trillion dong). In 2008, the province had the local budget of 1,610 billion dong and it expects to have 6,220 billion dong in 2009.

The development of Dung Quat EZ has changed the GDP structure of the province with industrial production value on the increase. The value of industrial production value in 2008 was 2,600 billion dong. It is expected that when the oil refinery becomes operational in 2009 at low capacity (2.5 million tonnes), the provincial industrial production value will reach 30 trillion dong.

The national oil and gas group is considering expanding the oil refinery to raise the capacity to 8-10 million tonnes per annum. The Dung Quat EZ will also be expanded with a deep water port capable of receiving ships of 250-300,000 dwt to help attract big-scale projects.

It is expected that in the expanded areas, there will be a steel complex capitalised at $5 billion (the project has got the go-ahead from the government, and the investor is making a feasibility study). The EZ expects to attract $15 billion worth of investment capital by 2015 and $20 billion by 2020.

Dung Quat will be an industrial city ?

Experts say Dung Quat already has two positive factors for the forming up of an industrial city: the industrial factor, with many factories and workshops operational, gathering 15,000 workers; and the agricultural factor, with eight communes and 72,000 local residents. Meanwhile, Van Tuong new urban area is taking shape. When expanded, Dung Quat will have 24 communes, one town and 225,000 local residents.

The experts believe that if it became a city, it could become a driving force for the development of the regional economy.

They have stressed that the model of industrial city is the more suitable model for Dung Quat than the model of special economic zone. They said that a special economic zone would need specific laws and legal framework, which would take time and many opportunities, could be missed.

Thoi Bao Kinh Te Vietnam - September 23, 2009