Significant declines recorded year-on-year.
Newly-registered foreign direct investment (FDI) and additional capital in March totaled $645 million, a significant decline year-on-year, according to Foreign Investment Agency (FIA) under the Ministry of Planning and Investment.
As at March 20 there were 267 new projects with total registered capital of $1.21 billion in 2015, 40.6 per cent less year-on-year. Only 102 existing projects increased their capital, by $621.12 million, or 48.2 per cent of the figure in the same period last year. The total of newly-registered and additional capital was $1.837 billion, or 55.1 per cent of the figure in the same period last year.
FIA explained that in the first quarter there was an increase in the number of new projects and those increasing their capital compared to the same period of year, but there were no large-scale projects. Hence, the capital of new projects and projects adding capital was down.
In the first quarter disbursement of FDI capital was up significantly, at $3.05 billion, an increase of 7 per cent year-on-year. Experts said that strong belief among foreign investors in the investment environment was behind the increased disbursement.
Exports by foreign-invested enterprises (including crude oil) in the first were expected to be $25.08 billion, an increase of 12.9 per cent year-on-year and accounting for 70 per cent of total export turnover. Imports were expected to be $23.09 billion, an increase of 24 per cent and making up 62 per cent of total import turnover.
Among 14 sectors receiving foreign investment, the manufacturing and processing sector attracted the most attention from foreign enterprises, with 115 new projects. Total newly-registered capital and additional capital in the sector was $1.4 billion, accounting for 76.6 per cent of total capital.
Real estate ranked second, with the total new and additional capital of $202.93 million, or 14 per cent of the total. Repair, wholesale and retail ranked third, with 38 new projects and total new and additional capital of $123.36 million.
The foreign-invested sector recorded a trade surplus of $1.98 billion.