1. Geographical location:
Nghe An province lies between 180 33′ and 200 01′ north latitude, and from 1030 52′ to 1050 48′ east longitude, which is in the center of the northern part of Central Vietnam.
It is located between Thanh Hoa and Ha Tinh, bordered to the West by Laos and to the East by the East Sea. Lying on the East-West economic corridor connecting Myanmar – Thailand – Laos – Vietnam by the ASEAN Highway 7 to Cua Lo seaport, Nghe An has a grade 1 city, 3 towns and 17 districts, of which Vinh city is the economic and cultural centre of the province and of the North Central Region.
Situated to the northeast of the Truong Son ranges, Nghe An has diversified and complex topography, sharply split by mountain ranges and rivers, sloping from the north west downward to the southeast with three distinct ecological regions: the mountainous areas (accounting for 83% of the province), lowlands and coastal plains. The highest peak is mount Pulaileng (at 2,711m) in Ky Son district, the lowest are the plains in districts of Quynh Luu, Dien Chau, Yen Thanh, even at 0.2 m above sea level (Quynh Thanh commune, Quynh Luu district).
2. Climate and Hydrology:
– Climate: Nghe An is in the tropical monsoon region, directly affected by dry, hot Southern – West monsoon (from April to August) and cool, wet northern East monsoon (from November to March of the following year). The average temperature ranges around 23 and 24,20C. The annual rainfall is 1,200 – 2,000 mm. The average humudity fluctuates between 80% and 90%. The province receives an annual average of 1,460 sunshine hours.
– Hydrology: Nghe An has 7 river basins (with separate estuaries) with the total length of river being 9,828 km, the average density is 0,7 km/km2, the largest river is the Ca (the Lam river), originating from Muong Pec District (Xieng Khoang Province of Laos) with the length of 522 km (361 km in Nghe An province), a basin of 27,200 km2 (of which 15,346 km2 is in Nghe An province). The annual total water volume is about 28,109 m3)
3. Natural land area:
Nghe An has natural land area of 1.649.368,62 hectares. It is Vietnam’s largest province with complex and diversified topography including seas, plains, midlands and mountains. The agricultural land accounts for 1,238,315.48 hectares, of which farming land is 256,834.9 hectares, forest land 972,910.52 hectares, land for aquaculture 7,457.5 hectares, land for salt production 837.98 hectares, land for other agricultural purposes 265.58 hectares, non-agricultural land 124,653.12 hectares, not-yet-used land 286,056.4 hectares.
Large land area is a great potential to develop agriculture, forestry and fishery production on a large scale, to produce raw materials for processing industry including long-term and short-term plants, fruit trees, herbal plants, cattle and poultry husbandry.
4. Population and labour:
With more than 3,1 million people, Nghe An is Vietnam’s fourth largest province in population (after Ha Noi, Ho Chi Minh city and Thanh Hoa). The urban dwellers account for 13.1%; women account for 50.32%; the population not involving in agricultural production accounts for 31.3%. The average population density is 178 people/km2. The natural population growth rate is 1.0%.
Nghe An is the native land of President Ho Chi Minh, the world cultural celebrity. It has a fond-of-learning tradition and is famous for its excellent, diligent and creative people. It is the educational and training centre for the North Central Region with 5 universities, 11 colleges offering various programs such as economics, technology, vocational skills, teachers, medical care, culture and arts. Particularly, professional and vocational schools in the province are able to meet the investors’ demand for human resources.
The total labor force is about 1.8 million people, of whom professionally trained workers account for 44%, skill-trained laborers account for 36%.
5. Natural resources
– Forest resources: The total forestry land is 972,910.52 hectares, of which forests for production is 501,634.85 hectares, protected forests comprise 302,068.47 ha, special-use forests account for 169,207.2 hectares. The wood reserve is about 50 million m3. More than 1,000 million bamboos are a good resource of raw materials for developing forest-based industries.
Fauna and flora ecosystem: Nghe An forests have a diversified ecosystem with 1,513 kinds of higher class plants, 241 kinds of animals, which mainly live in the area of Biosphere Reserve Zone such as Pu Mat National Park, nature conservation zones: Pu Huong, Pu Hoat….These are big potentials for development of ecological, discovering, adventurous tourism.
Western Nghe An Biosphere Reserve Zone of Vietnam including Pu Mat National Park with area of 93,523 hectares and the two nature conservation zones Pu Huong (41,127 ha) and Pu Hoat (over 34,723 hectares) is the largest biosphere reserve zone of the Southeast Asia with various and plentiful rare flora and fauna species, which is potential for development of ecological tourism.
System of Caves: Nghe An has numerous limestone mountains with plentiful caves. Many famous caves have spectacular tectonics such as Tham Om cave, Bua cave, Tham Chang cave, Co Ngun cave (Quy Chau), Poòng cave (Quy Hop)….
– Marine resources: Nghe An has a 82 km coastline with a water surface area of 4,230 nautical square miles, 6 estuaries, over 3,000 hectares of saline, brackish water, 12,000 hectares of fresh, salty water, suitable for fishery and seafood processing development. Nghe An has developed 900-1000 hectares of brackish water for salt production with about 100,000 tons of salt/ year. There are plenty of beautiful and well-known beaches in Nghe An such as Cua Lo, Nghi Thiet, Dien Thanh, Quynh Phuong and two big islands of Hon Ngu and Hon Mat, which is a big potential for development of marine tourism.
– Mineral resources: Nghe An has a wide range of mineral mines; especially, minerals to produce building materials including about 4 billion tons of limestone for production of cement, over 900 million tons of white limestone, about 1.2 billion tons of clay for cement material, about 5 million cubic meters of clay for premium pottery and porcelain production, 500 million cubic meters of construction stones, 260 million cubic meters of basalt rocks, 150 million cubic meters of Granite, 300 million cubic meters of marble, etc. The wide range and variety of the above mentioned minerals is focally distributed. Main materials and additive materials are closely located, in good quality, near road system, so it is very potential and convenient for production of cement, pottery/porcelain, fine rock powder, tiling bricks, handicrafts, etc.
6. Humanity resources
The tradition of struggle for national liberation, natural and social conquest has made Nghe An a land rich in cultural and historical experience, treasure of architectural culture, and distinctive behavioural culture. Numerous historical heritages and relics bear the names of leaders, heroes, historical celebrities, scholars, scientists, cultural celebrities of Vietnam. At present, over 1,000 heritages and relics have been recognized in Nghe An, of which 125 units are acknowledged as national level, 109 recognized as provincial level; especially, the Kim Lien – Nam Dan heritage associated with the childhood of president Ho Chi Minh, the hero of national liberation and the world cultural celebrity has been recognized by the Government as a special national heritage of culture and history.
Nghe An has 24 well-known festivals associated with community life. They have nostalgic echoes of folk belief, reflecting local residents’ life and wishes. Festivals in Nghe An are organized all year round, but more at the beginning of the lunar year on the occasions of crop harvests, traditional lunar New Year, celebrations of regions and ethnics, memorial celebration to commemorate heroes who have protected and constructed the fatherland. Some festivals are attractive to numerous visitors such as Con Temple, Cuong Temple, Mai King Temple, Hoang Muoi Temple, Bua Cave, etc.
In addition to its traditional festivals, Nghe An has a variety of products and old-aged traditional handicrafts production villages associated with habits, customs, spirit, and community life activities of villagers. Traditional villages of handicraft have been preserved from generation to generation such as: bamboo knitting village in Xuan Nha (Hung Nguyen), blacksmith village in Nho Lam, village of stone sculpture handicraft in Dien Binh (Dien Chau), textile village in Phuong Lich (Dien Chau), brocading, embroidery handicraft of Thai and H’Mong ethnic minorities, rattan and bamboo handicraft in Nghi Loc, etc.
Furthermore, Nghe An has a variety of valuable intangible cultural heritages such as folklore, folk music, folk dance, customs, practices, festival, gastronomy culture, traditional villages of handicraft, etc. Especially, the folk song Vi Dam Xu Nghe has been recognised by UNESCO as national intangible cultural heritage. These are extremely valuable resources of tourist value.
In short, the abundant and varied natural resources combined with the local human culture resources make Nghe An an attractive destination for domestic and foreign visitors.
Infrastructure and supportive services for investment
1. Transport infrastructure: Nghe An is the hub of various transportation networks including roadways, railways, airways, seaways and local water lines, and border passes. It is an important intersection of transport for the North Central Region, the connecting point for the North and the South of Vietnam as well as for the East – West economic corridor as follows:
+ Roadways: There are 8 national routes running through the province, of which there are 3 North- South roads (highway 1A, national road 15, Ho Chi Minh highway), 3 East – West routes to Laos (national roads 7, 46, 48); Trans-Asia road from Laos though Thanh Thuy border pass to Cua Lo seaport and Dong Hoi seaport. Many other important roads have been upgraded and constructed together with provincial and district roads to create a complete road system connecting local districts, economic areas of the province and to radiate nationwide and other countries in the region.
+ Seaways: The 4-quay Cua Lo seaport (15 km from Vinh city) with a capacity of 3 million tons per year is capable of receiving ships 10,000 DWT. At present, Cua Lo deep seaport has been planned and is under construction to accommodate vessels of 50,000 DWT- 100,000 DWT, which is a great potential for maritime transport and import and export activities of Nghe An and for the North Central Region. In addition, the province has planned to build Dong Hoi seaport (Quynh Luu) for receiving ships of 30,000 – 50,000 DWT in 2015.
+ Airways: Vinh airport is the only one for the three north central provinces of Thanh Hoa, Nghe An, and Ha Tinh. Presently, the Vinh – Ho Chi Minh route serves 5 flights daily, Vinh – Ha Noi 2 flights daily, Vinh – Danang- Buon Ma Thuot 5 flights weekly. …and an international route Vinh – Vientiane (Lao PDR). In the coming time, Vinh airport will be upgraded to increase more domestic flights and to establish international flights.
Vinh Airport Upgrading Project with Its investor:Vietnam Airport Corporation. and designed by the consultant joint venture of Singapore and America has been finished and put into operation in 2015. The designed capacity is 2,000,000 passengers per year and can handle 1,000 passengers at peak hours. Once completed, it will be able to receive many kinds of large airplanes.
+ Railways: The 94 km North – South railway runs through the province. Vinh grade 1 railway station is the third largest passengers and cargo transit in the country. In addition, there is a Cau Giat – Thai Hoa railroute to western mountainous districts of the province.
+ Border gates: With 419 km of border line with Laos (the country’s longest border line), Nghe An has 4 border gates to Laos, namely Nam Can international border pass in Ky Son, Thanh Thuy border pass in Thanh Chuong, and 2 other smaller border gates Thong Thu in Que Phong and Cao Veu in Anh Sơn. These are the gateways for import and export activities for the Northwest region of Nghe An – the links between the North region, the Central provinces of Vietnam and the North and Central provinces of Laos and Northeast of Thailand and Myanmar.
2. Other infrastructure and supportive services for investment:
– Electricity supply system: The national power grid is accessible to the 20 districts and towns in the province. Numerous hydropower plants have been built and put into operation such as Ban Ve, Khe Bo, Hua Na, Ban Coc, Nhan Hac and dozens of other small and medium sized ones capable of supplying sufficient electricity for production and daily life. A thermal power plant with capacity of 2,400 MW has been approved.
– Water supplies: The system of rivers, lakes, reservoirs coupled with plentiful annual rainfall can sufficiently supply water for industrial production and agricultural cultivation. The present system of water plants and others under construction will supply plentiful water for daily life and production.
– Information and telecommunication: The modern telecommunication network with various services can fully meet the demands for domestic and international communication. Many telephone service providers have maximized their networks at districts, towns and city in the province. So far, 100% of communes and villages have access to telephone services and 26.9% of the population has internet access. Nghe An ranked 4th of the ICT index in the nation in 2012.
– Finance, Banking and Insurance
Nghe An has a banking system from the central level to the grassroot. There is a wide variety of banks and branches of big commercial banks (43 banks and branches). Together with adequate finance and banking system, insurance services can satisfy the needs of investors and businesses in the province.
– Health care services: Nghe An has a good medical care system with modern equipment and facilities for hospitals at provincial, district, inter-communal and communal levels that can satisfy the need of health care for the residents and investors. Nghe An general hospital is the largest with 700 beds. Vinh city has some specialized hospitals such as orthopaedics and rehabilitation, obstetrics and pediatrics, ophthalmology and 8 other private hospitals, of which there are 2 with a capacity of 400 beds.
– Supermarkets, Hotels and Restaurants:
There are big supermarkets in Vinh city such as Big C, Metro, Intimex … and many other shopping centres in the province. There is a chain of good hotels, guest houses, of which there are a 5-star hotel, 5 four-star hotels and many other three-star and two-star hotels. The number of visitors to Nghe An is 3 million per year, including about 300,000 international tourists.
– Major tourist attractions:
* Nam Dan tourist place: Kim Lien village – the home village of president Ho Chi Minh (including the house in his father village, the house in his mother village, tomb of his mother Hoang Thi Loan on mount Chung). Mai Hac De King relics place.
* Vinh city and its neighborhood: Ho Chi Minh square and Uncle Ho statue; leisure area: central park, Mount Quyet – Garden tourist place, Ben Thuy quay and recreation zone of Cua Nam Lake. Nationally certified relics: Hong Son Temple, Can Linh Pagoda, Vinh ancient citadel, Quang Trung King temple, museums.
* Cua Lo beach: sea swimming, relaxation, visit to Ngu island, Mat island, sports, spiritual visits.
* Pu Mat national Park and nature conservation zones.
* Ecological and cultural tourist zones Quy Chau – Que Phong: Bua cave, Tham Om cave, Xao Va waterfall, ethnic museums and numerous primary forest or reforestration zones.
* In addition, there are other tourist attractions such as historical and cultural Cuong Temple – Hien estuary place, Bai Lu ecological tourist zone, hot spring stream Giang Son – Do Luong, Quynh Bang and Quynh Phuong marine leisure and Con Temple spiritual visit.
Comparative Advantages of Nghe An Province
1- Strategic location:
Nghe An is located in the heart of the North Central Region, on North – South and East – West route. It shares 419 km border with Laos to the West and has 4 border gates. Vinh is a grade 1 city, which is the economic, cultural centre of the province and the North Central Region.
2. Abundant natural resources
The 16,493,866 km2 province of Nghe An, the largest in Vietnam, has a diversified topography with seas, plains, mountains rich in natural mineral resources, large forests, long coast lines, large sea areas, hence a big potential for development of processing industry, forest and sea – based economy.
3- Synchronized infrastructure and services for investment support:
Nghe An is among the few provinces with a varied traffic infrastructure system, including roadways, railways, airways (Vinh Airport) and seaways (Cua Lo and Đong Hoi seaport). Vinh Airport is the major one in the North Central Region. The power grid, water supply, post and telecommunication services, finance, banking, education and training schools, health care centers are available to meet the demand of all people and enterprises. The infrastructure for tourists and recreational activities has been invested and upgraded.
4- Plenty of qualified human resources:
The nation’s fourth largest province of Nghe An with a population of over 3 million is famous for its studious, hard working, and creative residents. It is home to 5 universities and 11 colleges, which provide education for over 35 thousand students. It is an educational and training centre for North Central Region and the country, providing sufficient qualified human resources for investment, development and is a large market for all goods, services.
The total number of human resources consists of over 1.7 million laborers, of which professionally-educated people account for 42%, skill – trained workers account for 32%.
5- Plentiful tourist potentials:
Nghe An is the native land of president Ho Chi Minh – the world cultural Celebrity, starting point of “Legacy Route of Central Region”, with numerous beautiful beaches. The biosphere preservation in the West of Nghe An has many primary forests and attractive ecological areas. Nghe An is a charming destination for domestic and international tourists.
6- Dynamic economic development and stable political security
In recent years, Nghe An has experienced robust and sustainable economic development with an average GDP growth rate of 10,5% (higher than the nation’s average rate). Its budget revenue has topped the North Central Region for many years. The stable political and social security is is an ideal condition for investment and tourism attraction.
7- Open and flexible policies for investment attraction
Together with its potential advantages, Nghe An has made efforts to improve the environment for investment and business. The province has effectively practiced the slogan “The authority goes together with enterprises” by organizing direct dialogues between the authority and companies to solve problems and difficulties for the investors, positively implementing administrative reform and granting preferential policies for investment incentives and support in the proper manner, providing all favorable conditions for enterprises to study and seek for investment opportunities, and to carry out their investment projects effectively in the province.