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Hoa Binh is a moutainous provinve, located at the gateway to the northwest of the country with the natural area of 4.600km2. The administrative units include one city and ten dictricts; 210 communes, wards, and towns. Hoa Binh has a population of around 800,000 people mainly 06 ethic groups including: Muong, Kinh, Thai, Tay, Yao, H'Mong, in which Muong occupies about 63%.

1. Geographical location

Hoa Binh is located at the gateway to the northwest, the center of Hoa Binh is only 76 km from Hanoi in the direction of Highway 6. Located in the  east of Hanoi, northern of Phu Tho province; west of Thanh Hoa and Son La province, southeast of Ninh Binh province, Hoa Binh has an important role in the defense strategy regionally and nationally.

The province has the transport system of roads and waterway relatively developed compared to those in other provinces in the region, including: Ho Chi Minh Road, Highway 06, Highway 12B, especially the Hoa Lac Highway to Hoa Binh city is currently under construction, it will take approximately 1 hour by car from Hanoi Capital.  Its strategic position is an advantage for Hoa Binh to expand economic cooperations.

A typical feature of the terrain is hills. In Hoa Binh province, mountains slope from the Northwest to the Southeast, dividing it into two distinct areas:  the northwest (the higher) and southeast (lower region).

2. Climate: Hoa Binh lies in the tropical monsoon climate, with two distinct rainy season and dry seasons, average temperature:   23°C, average humidity:  60%, the average rainfall:  1.800mm.

3. Land resources

Land of Hoa Binh is typically with high fertility suitable for many crops. With hundreds of thousands of hectares of land including the adjoining plots, land in Hoa Binh can be used for various purposes, especially afforestation , industrial plants for the development of agro - forestry and industrial development . The area inapplicable for farming and agriculture can be used for the expansion of industrial zones.

4. Water resources

Hoa Binh province has a system of rivers and streams distributed across all districts .  The largest water source of Hoa Binh is Da River with a total length of 151 km. Hoa Binh lake has the surface area of about 8,000 hectares, and capacity of 9.5 billion cubic meter; therefore, besides supplying water to Hoa Binh Hydropower plant, one important task is to regulate and supply water to the Red River Delta.

In addition , Hoa Binh has two main rivers: BoiRiver and BuoiRiver with about 1,800 hectares. Lakes and ponds are scattered throughout the province . This is also the place for storing and regulating the water source.

5. Forest resources

To 2009, the area of forestry land in the province is 251.315 hectares, occupying 54.7% of natural land, in which the natural forest land is 151,949 hectares and the planted forest land is 98.250 hectares. The forest in Hoa Binh has a wide range of medicinal plants which are used for treatment such as: celastrus hindsu Benth, Gynostemma pentaphyllum, tuber Stephaniae glabrae ... It also has a huge quantity of  kinds of bamboos that can meet various needs of industrial production (pulp, flooring and plywood).

Hoa Binh province also has some nature reserve and national gardens and parks such as Hang Kia – Pa Co nature reserve, Thuong Tien Nature Reserve, Pu Luong Nature Reserve (bordered with Thanh Hoa province), Phu Canh Nature Reserve, Ngoc Son Nature Reserve, CucPhuongNational Park (bordered with Ninh Binh and Thanh Hoa provinces), BaViNational Park, and the Hoa Binh lake reserve. Those are the areas with high level of  biodiversity, valuable for research and developing tourism.

6. Mineral resources

Hoa Binh has abundant mineral resources to meet the need of industries namely material, energy, construction. Some typical minerals are coals, granite, limestone, clay, and so on.

Especially, there are some mineral water spots with high level of mineral to develop tourism, medical treatment.

7. Tourism

Hoa Binh has the diverse resources for developing tourism, including rivers, lakes, mineral water springs, nature reserves, and national parks. The most special one is Hoa Binh lake with the area of around 8,000 hectares, large capacity of 40 islands. This is the place with favorable conditions for developing maritime products, sightseeing, ecotourism. Besides, Kim Boi mineral water spring has become an attraction to many visitors annually.

Hoa Binh is also renowned as a “cradle for Hoa Binh culture” with the impressive network of archeological sites, traditional festivals, and traditions.  It is the cultural diversity that creates the impressions to boost tourism of the province.

Currently, there are 185 relics which have been recorded for research and management, 21 provincial relics and 37 relics ranked by the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism.

Some famous tourism spots in Hoa Binh are: Da River, DauRongMountain (Cao Phong District), TienCave (Lac Thuy District), Kim Boi mineral water spring, LacVillage, H’mong Village (Mai Chau District), Muong Giang Mo Village (Binh Thanh – Cao Phong District, MuongCultureMuseum (Hoa Binh city). These exciting destinations attract both international and domestic tourists.

8. Attractive investment environment:

 In recent years, Hoa Binh has created the best conditions within the State and province's legal framework and regulations for investors that invest and conduct business in the province, such as: exemption of land rent for 11 - 15 years, exemption and maximum reduction of enterprise income tax to 50%... As well as focusing on solving problems for the ones that are running their business in Hoa Binh. Hoa Binh has always respected and paid attention to foreign affairs such as: politics, economy, culture and people... That aims to strengthen solidarity and friendship and taking advantage of the international community's support. In the upcoming time, the province will endeavor to futher improve the effectiveness of public relations, addressing an impressive image of the province to international friends, stressing to consolidate and develop the traditional friendship, at the same time extending relations with new partners and areas in hope to attract investment and contribute to socio - economic development of the province.

Translator - Le Chi

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