Lam Dong: Sustainable development, pioneering integration

Jun 30, 2017 | 04:25 PM GMT+7

TheLEADERLeveraging its inherent potentials and strengths, Lam Dong province strives to fulfill the set targets, maximizing internal resources, especially the policy of developing and promoting the brand of agricultural products, products processed from agroforestry; strengthening and promoting tourism as well as trade to expand domestic and foreign markets.

Lam Dong: Sustainable development, pioneering integration
Tuyen Lam Lake tourist area in Da Lat City, Lam Dong Province. Photo: Internet

Lam Dong is a mountainous province in the South of the Central Highlands with a height difference of 300m from Cat Tien district to Da Lat city of 1,500m above sea level, an average temperature of 18-25oC and an area of 9,773.54 km2. The province currently has 12 administrative units including 2 cities and 10 districts with Da Lat city as the economic administrative center of the province. The population is estimated at over 1,280,000 people with 43 ethnic groups.

Enhance the inherent strength

Lam Dong province with abundant resources has been affirming advantages for the dynamic economic sectors to develop. First of all, the tourism potential must be mentioned when in 2016, Lam Dong welcomed over 5.4 million visitors, including over 270,000 international visitors. With an area of over 22,000 hectares of protection forest, Da Lat - Don Duong pure landscape environment is a pine forest that creates a beautiful landscape for Da Lat along with the possession of thousands of ancient mansions. 

The existence of seven waterfalls which are national-level scenic spots, seven large lakes with beautiful landscapes has formed 33 tourist sites, 60 free attractions, 3 golf courses and Tuyen Lam Lake tourist area on 3,000 hectares. Lam Dong currently possesses many intangible cultures, in which UNESCO has recognized the Space of Gong Culture in Central Highlands, the Nguyen Dynasty's woodblocks and Langbiang, the world biosphere reserve. In addition, Da Lat City is recognized by the Prime Minister as the Flower Festival city with many varieties of native and imported flowers from countries around the world.

In terms of education and training, Lam Dong has two universities, six colleges, five professional secondary schools and over 60 vocational training institutions along with three research institutes: the Biological Research Institute, the Pasteur Institute and the Nuclear Research Institute in addition to their training and research functions, have contributed to the diversification of Lam Dong tourism.

With more than 270,000 hectares of agricultural land with mild sub-tropical climate, Lam Dong province is leading the country in terms of agricultural production quantity such as the area specializing in tea cultivation with an area of 21,131 hectares, the output of harvesting fresh tea buds of 212,800 tons/year. The area specializing in coffee cultivation ranked second in the country with 155,239 hectares, yields over 429,600 tons of coffee beans/year, in which there are over 17,000 hectares of Arabica coffee, yields over 48,000 tons. Da Lat's Arabica coffee has been brought into the global distribution system by Starbucks Group in the United States. Vegetables of all kinds are 58,418 hectares, yields over 2.1 million tons/year. The area specializing in flower cultivation is over 8,387 hectares, yields over 2.99 billion of cut flowers/year. Mulberry has an area of over 5,090 hectares, yields over 95,000 tons of fresh leaves/year, Actiso has an area of 147 hectares, yields over 2,200 tons/year. Cold-water fish with sturgeon, salmon has an output of more than 1,000 tons/year. Dairy cows are also the potential for developing the dairy processing industry with over 19,230 cows. Milk output is over 64,533 tons. Lam Dong also leads the country in hi-tech agricultural production with an area of over 49 thousand hectares, accounting for nearly 18% of agricultural land. In addition, Lam Dong has over 597,690 hectares of forests which are pine forests, various species of precious wood with more than 400 different types which is the raw material area serving the economic development of forestry and tourism. In the province, there are Bidoup Nui Ba National Park of 700.38 km2 wide and Cat Tien National Park of 272.73 km2 wide.

In terms of industry, Lam Dong develops based on agricultural, forestry and fishery processing industries, fertilizers, production and distribution of electricity and gas. Loc Son industrial zone of 183 hectares and Phu Hoi industrial zone of 109 hectares were established and put into operation. Lam Dong province has also planned 12 industrial clusters, 6 industrial clusters of 238 hectares are currently under deployment.

Priority target to 2020

Aiming to 2020, Lam Dong will become a developed province of the Central Highlands with per capita GDP reaching and exceeding the national average. For Da Lat city, the goal is to build and develop Da Lat and its vicinity to 2030 to become a modern, world-class urban area; with peculiarities of climate, natural landscape, culture, history and architectural heritage of national, regional and international significance.

At present, the transportation infrastructure is looking for investment capital for upgrading the national highways 27, 28, 55, Truong Son Dong road, Luong Son - Dai Ninh road, promoting investment in Dau Giay - Lien Khuong expressway; restoration of Da Lat - Thap Cham railway. At the same time, international flights Da Lat - Singapore - Da Lat, Da Lat - Siem Reap - Da Lat and some Northeast Asian countries such as Japan, Korea; domestic flights to some other major cities in the country are promoted.

According to urban development orientation, Da Lat city to 2030 with a vision to 2050 will increase the area scale from 393.28 km2 to 3,359.3 km2 according to Decision 704/QD-TTG dated 12.5.2014 of the Prime Minister. Specific mechanisms and policies to develop Da Lat under the Prime Minister's Decision No. 1528/QD-TTg dated 03.9.2015 are performed in order to build Da Lat city into a national and international tourist and resort center, a national center for scientific research, training and technology transfer, a national and international trade center, a national and international research center for high-tech agricultural production and protection of biodiversity, with an important position for the protection of national security and defense. 

In parallel, Bao Loc city is developed into an industrial city of the province in association with the development of service sectors, clearly demonstrating its role as a key economic area in the southern part of Lam Dong province.

Service and tourism will become a regional and international dynamic economic sector, with priority given to the development of high quality ecotourism, conference and seminar tourism, resort tourism, agricultural tourism ... building special tourism brands, products. At the same time, specific mechanisms are performed to perfect Tuyen Lam lake tourist area, Da Lat - Dan Kia tourist area, Dai Ninh lake Eco-tourism area; linking Lam Dong with the Central Highlands region, Southeast region from which triangles for tourism development are formed.

On the other hand, agriculture is developed through attracting investment into flower trading centers, wholesale markets of agricultural products; high-tech agricultural industrial zone of 316.8 hectares; high-tech agricultural zone of 221.32 hectares. High-tech agriculture reaches 25-30% in area by 2020, accounting for 50-60% of the total value of agricultural products. Particularly for trade - industry, domestic and foreign markets are promoted for expansion; exports are boosted especially high value products of the province acting as a driving force for economic growth; the attraction of development investment is continued: Trade center, supermarket system, central market...

The province will prioritize the development of agricultural and forestry products processing, dairy processing, post-harvest vegetables and flowers preservation industries and cottage industry associated with services - tourism, facilitating the development of supporting industries for rural agriculture in the most effective way, continuing to invest in Loc Son Industrial Zone of 41 hectares and 6 industrial clusters in the province. In addition, information technology is boosted, Lam Dong calls for investment in a concentrated information technology park with an area of 63 hectares.