It is a case of forza Italia for Italian investment projects in Vietnam.
Fisheries projects are prioritised for financial assistance
Italian ambassador to Vietnam Lorenzo Angeloni told VIR that the Italian government would financially fuel prospective Vietnamese-Italian joint ventures and the Vietnamese government projects.
Priorities would be given to joint ventures engaging in agriculture, breeding, fisheries, food-processing and craftsmanship. Energy, transportation, waste treatment, microfinance, fair-trade, sustainable tourism and cultural and environmental projects would be included, Angeloni said.
Under Article 7 of Italy’s Law 49/87 on development cooperation, Italian companies could demand soft loans to create joint ventures for projects in Vietnam.
The main goals are to mobilise financial resources and add capabilities through new public-private partnerships to promote an inclusive and sustainable development, giving priority to the creation of jobs and local added value as a synergy with the Italian cooperation activities.
General conditions for a new joint venture or capital increase, include a local partner controlling at least 25 per cent of capital, the soft loan only asked by the Italian partner and the company must have be active in the same sector of the joint venture for no less than three years. The soft loan can be up to 70 per cent of the Italian partner’s share, to a maximum value of €5 million. After a specific period of time, the Italian side would return its loans to the government without causing any bad influence to the joint venture.
“This is a very good opportunity for more Italian firms to do business in Vietnam and for more Vietnamese firms to cooperate with Italian partners,” said the embassy’s Development Cooperation Office head Carlo Cibo.
According to the Ministry of Planning and Investment’s Foreign Investment Agency, Vietnam was now home to 39 Italian projects with total registered capital of $187.7 million.
At present, the Italian government has provided financial support for an Italian firm in a joint venture in Ba Ria-Vung Tau province, engaged in aquatic product processing and exports.
Cibo said that Italian firms must be selected for being granted loans by the Italian government. Also, Vietnamese partners must introduce feasible business and investment plans and projects.
“Vietnamese partners need to seek information from Vietnam-based Italian Chamber of Commerce or from the embassy,” Angeloni said.
In a similar development, he said the Italian government would also offer Vietnam official development assistance (ODA) of €30 million in soft loans and €4.5 million in grants. Additionally, a further grant of €7.5 million has been made available as the result of a Debt Swap Agreement signed in 2010.
These funds would be destined to development cooperation activities to be implemented over the next three years, according to the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
These funds would be focused on health improvement, training and support to small- and medium-sized enterprises and environment/environmental protection, which would be all implemented in Vietnam’s central provinces of Quang Tri, Thua Thien-Hue and Quang Nam where are considered by the Italian government to be high number of invalids and poor households.
Vietnam currently houses 21 Italian operational ODA projects worth total 76 million euros, which would finish over the next two or three years.