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Provincial Competitiveness Index 2008: Da Nang ranks first   2008-12-11 - Thanh Nien

The Provincial Competitiveness Index 2008 (PCI 2008), which was announced this morning in Hanoi, partly reflects the dull economic panorama this year.

 

Da Nang ranks first, Dien Bien at the bottom of PCI 2008 (Source: VCCI)

 

The number of provinces which are listed as having very good economic management quality is less than last year while the number of localities with low economic management quality is higher. The two provinces of Binh Dinh and Vinh Long have been ousted from the very good group while the group of provinces with low competitiveness indexes has increased from 4 to 6 members.

 

Reductions of points occurred most often in the two fields of labour training and policies to develop the private economic sector, reflecting businesses’ displeasure with public service quality and the administration of local leaders.

 

A representative of the Vietnam Chamber for Commerce and Industry (VCCI), Tran Huu Huynh, said that these numbers show the negative changes of PCI 2008. Huynh said the index was complied based on surveys conducted up till May 2008. At that time, inflation was just beginning. If the index had been compiled based on current surveys, the results would have been different.

 

VCCI Chairman Vu Tien Loc said despite progress related to business registration (from 15 days to 12.25 days), taxation policy-related improvements and others, the provincial business environment still faces three problems: administrative formalities, labour and infrastructure.

 

Troublesome problems associated with administrative formalities increase compared to 2007 with 22.99% of surveyed businesses saying that they spent 10% of their time on this and 22.71% saying that unofficial fees caused difficulties for their business.

 

Labour and human resources continue to be a problem with just 18.5% saying they were satisfied with labour quality. Infrastructure is also a burden on businesses. Each company lost 7.5 days of work and 71% of production businesses were affected by poor infrastructure. Businessmen also complained a lot about power cuts.

 

There are changes on the PCI 2008 ranking list. Binh Duong loses its top position that it held for three consecutive years to place second, after Da Nang. Vinh Phuc, Vinh Long, Dong Thap and Long An occupy the following positions. Dien Bien stands at the bottom, replacing Dak Nong. Above Dien Bien are Bac Kan and Bac Lieu.

 

The new feature of PCI 2008 is a comparison of provinces’ previous positions on the list, through which one can see the progress of Ca Mau, Long An and Ha Nam.

 

US Ambassador to Vietnam Michael Michalak said PCI 2008 is “the voice of businesses”, as surveys are conducted of 7,820 companies from all 64 provinces and cities.

 

The index is a way for provinces and cities to realise their weakness and strengths to promote reforms and also a reference for international agencies in defining priority for their aid.

 

The PCI has been annually released by the VCCI and the Vietnam Competitiveness Initiative project (VNCI) since 2005.



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