The province’s $2 million Agro-Forestry Promotion and Investment Fund (APIF) will assist agro-forestry and tourism projects with a minimum $30,000 and a maximum $100,000 each.
| Ba Be lake |
But, if a project had a significant social influence or could bring about positive changes for the local community, it could receive up to $250,000, said Ngo Van Van, director of Bac Kan Investment-Trade and Tourism Promotion Centre.
APIF, belonging to Pro-Poor Partnership for Agro-Fishery Development (3PAD) Project and funded by International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), was launched last month to promote the development of agro-forestry in this northern mountainous province. APIF assists developing food and fruit trees, breeding cattle and poultry and aquaculture.
Forestry investment projects such as processing timber, bamboo, bee’s honey, ginger, anise, mushrooms, pine resin and medicinal trees, and tourism is also cherished. “Especially effectively-operating projects, which bring about benefits and help raise the income and improve the living standards for the poor in mountainous districts of Ba Be, Pac Nam and Ba Ria, will be supported with $100,000 each,” Van said.
With 420,990.5 hectares of forests and annual timber output of more than 63,000 cubic metres, the province has opportunities for developing and processing agro-forestry products. In order to lure investors, Bac Kan has given many incentives to businesses in the fields of applying advanced technologies in planting and processing timber, producing high-yield varieties and high-economic animals, and procuring and processing agro-forestry products.
In addition, the province has Ba Be Lake that is listed as one among 20 most beautiful freshwater lakes in the world. Bac Kan is also home to many national-level historical relics such as villages of Ca, Khau Ma, Na Tu and Na Pau and there are many market days and spring festivities. They have big potential for tourism development.
“In the first year of operations, four investment projects were funded by APIF at VND8 billion ($384,615). These projects are currently being implemented,” Van said. APIF funds a maximum of 49 per cent of total investment capital of a project and no more than $250,000. The project investors and partners involved in the project are responsible for 51 per cent.
With such an attractive policy, Bac Kan is appealing to many investors. Bac Kan is located in northeast Vietnam, 150 kilometres from Noi Bai international airport, more than 200km from Haiphong seaport and some 200km from Tan Thanh bordergate in Lang Son province. Presently, the province has a workforce of 200,000 people.
During 2005-2010, the province’s economy expanded 11.2 per cent, per year on average. Per capita income stood at VND9.6 million ($462) in 2010.