Of the total, US$16.34 billion is registered by 839 newly-licensed projects and the rest from additional capital poured into 215 ongoing projects, according to the Ministry of Planning and Investment’s Foreign Investment Agency (FIA).
The agency said that accommodation and restaurant services continued to catch the eye of foreign investors this year, drawing in US$8.8 billion.
Real estate came second with an estimated US$7.6 billion, followed by manufacturing and processing with US$2.97 billion.
In 2009, the country’s disbursed capital is estimated to have reached US$10 billion, about 1.5 billion lower than in 2008 when FDI hit a record high of US$64 billion, according to the agency.
During the reviewed period, FDI enterprises achieved many encouraging results, making up 52.7 percent of Vietnam’s total export revenues. Their export turnover, including oil and gas, reached US$29.9 billion.
Financial analysts have attributed these achievements to the government’s efforts to improve the investment environment by making it commensurate with international practices and laws.
Many provinces and cities have taken the initiative in order to attract this source of capital by restructuring various departments for better efficiency including administrative procedures and licensing as well as helping FDI projects to get off the ground.
However, Vietnam needs to upgrade its infrastructure and develop its human resources plus the management capacity of local authorities to accelerate the rate of disbursement, which has been a big obstacle to foreign investors.
The agency said the country is expected to attract between US$22-25 billion in FDI and disburse between US$10-11 billion in 2010.