The southern province of Long An is reviewing delayed and tardy property projects as part of a process to improve its investment environment.
There are 10 of them, mostly in the districts of Duc Hoa, Ben Luc and Can Giuoc and related to infrastructure, housing and commercial developments, the Department of Planning and Investment said.
An official from the Department's Investment Office told Viet Nam News on condition of anonymity that the inspection was meant to appraise investors' capability to complete the projects.
"The review is necessary and we do it every year to ensure the effectiveness of investments," the official added.
Long An remains in the top group in the Provincial Competitiveness Index despite sliding six places to 12th this year.
It was among the best performers in economic management, according to the Viet Nam Chamber of Commerce and Industry's 2010 report.
One of the main reasons for the projects to run behind schedule was the 2009 economic crisis, the director of the department, Nguyen Minh Ha, said.
Another was the change in Government policy regarding land use with the introduction of regulations on planning land use, price, withdrawal, compensation, assistance, and resettlement, he said.
Construction of a luxury complex consisting of a shopping mall, villa and apartments in Can Giuoc's Long Hau Commune is among the projects to come under the scanner.
The provincial People's Committee earmarked 153ha of land in 2007 for the property to be developed by Thai Son Company for which the latter agreed to pay VND78 billion (US$3.9 million) in compensation to residents who were to be relocated.
"We have paid 315 households VND40 billion ($2 million) for more than 73ha," a company spokesperson said.
"Ninety-seven other families have not agreed on the compensation amount and have asked for more."
The company is waiting for agreement to be reached before it can begin work.
Authorities require contractors of such projects to also build houses for people whose lands are acquired, a potential cause for delays.
The People's Committee has urged investors and relevant agencies to work together.
"Co-ordination between investors and relevant agencies is not close in some cases," Ha said, explaining that the investors behind some of the delayed projects were financially capable but not able to implement the projects or interested in doing so.
The department would work closely with the People's Committee to examine delayed projects, which would help businesses, especially investors like Thai Son, settle their problems, he said.
Real estate is among the main focus of investment for the Cuu Long (Mekong) Delta province besides some others like textiles, engineering and agricultural processing.
Long An has made much effort to attract foreign direct investment in the last few years. By early last year it had attracted more than $2.5 billion in 300 projects.
To help attract investors to its 19 industrial parks (IPs) and zones (IZs), it had virtually linked all of them with HCM City, head of the Long An Industrial Parks Management Board Phan Thanh Phi said.
In the future the province would focus on building a road network connecting its highways with Long An Port, he said.
A number of large water works and solid-waste treatment areas would be built to serve the IPs, IZs, and urban areas, he added.