340 foreign invested agricultural projects licensed

Ha Noi, Dec. 17 (VNA) -- Viet Nam has 340 foreign-direct-investment, FDI, agricultural projects worth USD 2,272 million.

Almost all the investment has been for cultivation, fisheries, livestock breeding and processing and has helped the restructuring of agriculture and the creation of rural jobs.

The investment has also helped the Vietnamese acquire management experience and modern skills and intergrate with the world economy.

Economists say the most effective FDI projects are those producing animal fodder. Such projects will produce three million tonnes of fodder this year or 70 percent of total output.

Viet Nam produced only 632,000 tonnes of fodder in 1995 and of this, joint ventures and foreign-invested enterprises contributed about 270,000 tonnes.

However, FDI capital for agriculture is still limited - about USD 6.7 million a project compared with an average of USD 17.5 million for other projects.

The low foreign investment is attributed to natural calamities, poor profitability, poor infrastructure and inadequate State management.

The Government and the Agriculture and Rural Development Ministry are attempting to attract higher foreign investment by symplifying administrative procedures and controlling taxes.--VNA