Hanoi (dpa) - Vietnam has attracted a record $15 billion in foreign direct investment so far this year, up nearly 40 per cent from the same period last year, an official said Tuesday.
The amount strengthened booming Vietnam's reputation as the new Asian magnet for investment, thanks to low wages, high literacy and a youthful population.
Of the fresh capital, more than $13 billion come from 1,283 newly licensed projects and the remainder from the expansions of existing projects, said Phan Huu Thang, director of the Foreign Investment Department under the Ministry of Planning and Investment.
"Most of the new projects invest in services and technologies," Thang said, adding that investors from Asia make up most of the fresh investment capital.
South Korea took the lead with $3.68 billion, or 24.5 per cent of the total of newly registered capital, followed by the British Virgins Islands with $3.5 billion, Singapore with $1.55 billion and Taiwan with $1.14 billion.
"The figures show that Vietnam is becoming a more attractive destination in Asia for foreign investors," Thang said.
Thang forecast that the total inflow into Vietnam would exceed $16 billion this year, a substantial jump over the initial target of $13 billion.