But Vietnam has proven to be a magnate with foreign investors this year.
Vietnam has attracted US$23.48 billion worth of foreign direct investment (FDI) in the first 10 months of this year, equal to 80.6 per cent of the figure in the same period last year, the Ministry of Planning and Investment (MPI) has reported.
From January to October, 2,100 new projects have been licensed with total registered capital of US$11.66 billion, down 32.1 per cent in volume and 9.1 per cent in value year-on-year, Vietnam News Agency (VNA) reported.
Just over 900 projects have increased their capital, by an additional US$ 5.71 billion, down 20.8 per cent in project numbers but up 4.4 per cent in capital, the ministry said.
It attributed the rise in capital to the US$1.38 billion added to a petrochemical complex of a Thai investor in the southern province of Ba Ria-Vung Tau, while the Tay Ho Tay project - a mega urban area project close to West Lake in Hanoi and invested by the South Korea - increased investment by US$ 774 million.
Foreign companies have invested US$ 6.11 billion during the period through capital contributions and share purchases, representing a year-on-year decline of 43.5 per cent.
The Foreign Investment Agency under the MPI said that about US$ 15.8 billion has been disbursed in the first 10 months, equal to 97.5 per cent of the figure in the same period last year.
Processing and manufacturing remains the most attractive sector for foreign investors, drawing in US$ 10.7 billion and representing 45.7 per cent of committed FDI. Power production and distribution follows, with over US$ 4.8 billion (20.5 per cent of the total), then real estate and wholesale.
Among the 109 countries and territories investing in the country, Singapore is the largest, with US$7.51 billion, followed by the South Korea with US$ 3.42 billion, and China with US$ 2.17 billion.
The Mekong Delta province of Bac Lieu retains its position as the largest FDI recipient during the period, with US$ 4 billion, accounting for 17 per cent of the total. HCM City ranks second with US$ 3.7 billion, or 14.6 per cent, followed by Hanoi with US$3.13 billion.
Exports by the foreign-invested sector (including crude oil) in the first 10 months are worth US$147.97 billion, or 97.6 per cent of last year’s value. Exports excluding crude oil stand at US$146.52 billion, or 97.8 per cent.
Imports by the sector have totalled US$117.56 billion, or 97 per cent of the figure last year. The sector therefore posts a trade surplus in the first 10 months of US$30.4 billion including crude oil and nearly US$30 billion excluding. - Bernama