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Vietnam opens real estate sector to foreigners

Investors from Qatar and other countries can now buy properties in Vietnam with open ownership for a period of 50 years, as a result of opening up of the real estate sector to foreign investors.


Some of the properties on offer in Phan Thiet
After 50 years, investors have to resell the properties to others at the prevailing market price. However, many Vietnamese businessmen and operators in the field told Gulf Times that they are hopeful of the 50-year period being extended in the future. 
Further, they pointed out that the demand is high on such units in Phan Thiet, a beach resort city more than 200km east of Ho Chi Minh City (HMC).
On the sidelines of the 8th International Travel Expo (ITE) held in HMC last week, Gulf Times visited some of the luxury villas. Most of them are by the beach with some directly overlooking the sea and others very close to the beach. There are also other recreational facilities such as golf grounds, closed swimming pools and health clubs.
Philip Phil, a manager at Asian Trails, a major tourist company in the region with offices in HMC, said that the prices of such properties are on the rise, as demand is very high and only few units are still available for sale. 
The prices usually start at $280,000 and may go up to $1mn, depending on the proximity to the beach, quality and space of the buildings. He also believes that it is a good time to invest in real estate in Vietnam now with the market still emerging and offering good opportunities both for nationals and international investors. 
He explained that Vietnam could equally cater to tourists of different categories, preferences and budgets easily and with high quality. 
“From backpackers looking for cheap hotels at around $10-15 a night to VIPs who need helicopters and luxury and special services, Vietnam has the potential to provide for,” he said. 
He also expected more turnout of international tourists in the near future as the country has a lot to offer in terms of leisure and recreation tourism. Local sources also pointed out that the sector has opened up varied opportunities for infrastructure projects, where foreign investors are welcomed to undertake joint ventures with national companies. 
“The agreement ratified at ITE-HMC among Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar and Vietnam to promote the four neighbouring countries as one destination through a single visa as well as encouraging inter-tourism among their citizens, would eventually increase the tourist turnout in Vietnam,” said a visiting Dubai-based travel marketing executive. 
He said that the country is a promising market with a bright future for such business. Further, the local authorities in Vietnam are highly aware of the importance of the industry for the national economy. Most of them have expressed their support and welcomes international investors.
In the meantime, the related regulations and legislations are constantly being reviewed and updated to encourage the rapidly growing sector and clear any obstacles for both national and international 


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