The seminar to review HCM City’s investment stimulus programme in HCM City on August 15 (Photo: VNA)

HCM City (VNS/VNA) – It has been a remarkable transformation for Ho Chi Minh City’s People’s Hospital 115 which recently became the first medical facility in the country to successfully carry out a robotically-assisted brain tumour surgery.

Thirty years ago, its only piece of equipment had been an x-ray machine.

It currently gets 3,000 to 4,000 patients a day and provides emergency aid to over 400 of others, and was one of the city’s first stroke treatment centres, said Dr Phan Van Bau, the hospital’s director.

An investment stimulus programme carried out by the city had enabled the hospital to acquire the most advanced technologies and equipment with loans under the programme, he said.

Tien Tuan Pharmaceutical Machinery Co. Ltd was another to benefit from the programme.

A company spokesperson said it had got an interest-free loan of 45 billion VND (1.93 million USD) for building a factory and buying advanced equipment to expand production.

This enabled it to expand from having 40 workers and revenues of 40 billion VND (1.72 million USD) a year to 200 employees and revenues of nearly 200 billion VND (8.6 million USD), he said.

It is awaiting approval to invest in high-tech metalworking equipment using a loan of 10.5 billion VND (451,800 USD) with interest fully subsidised.

In 2015, the municipal People’s Committee had begun the programme, with technology, manufacturing, supporting industry, trading, agricultural, healthcare, education and training, culture and sports, infrastructure, and environment companies receiving 50-100 percent interest rate subsidies on loans of up to 100 billion VND (4.3 million USD).

Speaking at a recent meeting held by the municipal People’s Committee to review the programme, delegates said it had significantly stimulated investment in certain sectors, helping shift the city’s economic structure in the right direction and improving its competitiveness.

Tran Anh Tuan, Deputy Director of the Department of Planning and Investment, said so far 281 projects costing 23.78 trillion VND (1.02 billion USD) had received loans of 11.2 trillion VND (483.02 million USD).

Thanks to the subsidised loans, enterprises had boldly invested in new production technologies and equipment, he said.

Reviewing the impact of the programme on the city’s supporting industries, Nguyen Phuong Dong, Deputy Director of the Department of Industry and Trade, said the programme had encouraged businesses to invest in sectors targeted by the city such as mechanical engineering, chemicals, plastic, rubber, food and foodstuff, electronics, IT, textiles, and footwear.

However, delegates at the meeting complained about complicated procedures enterprises have to complete to benefit from the programme. This loses them market opportunities, making them hesitant about participating in the programme.

Nguyen Thanh Phong, Chairman of the HCM City People’s Committee, said the investment stimulus programme, unique in the country, had achieved positive results.

He instructed officials involved in the programme to review and simplify procedures and reduce the time it takes to appraise applications from businesses.

The Chairman also instructed the Department of Planning and Investment to advise the city on adding and removing sectors based on the situation on the ground.

The city planned to double the loan amount to 200 billion VND for a project, he said.

Phong ordered relevant agencies and business groups to propagate information about the programme to enable more businesses to benefit.-VNS/VNA

VNA