Tuesday,  Aug 21, 2018,11:47 (GMT+7) 0 0
Environment projects in HCMC in need of investment
By Van Nam
Thursday,  Aug 9, 2018,22:40 (GMT+7)

Environment projects in HCMC in need of investment

By Van Nam

Representatives at the conference on calling for investment in flood control and wastewater treatment on August 9 - PHOTO: VAN NAM

HCMC – The HCMC government today, August 9, publicized a list of 17 wastewater treatment, canal dredging and flood control projects, calling for investments as these infrastructure and environment projects require significant funding, exceeding the city’s budget.

Speaking at a conference on investment in urban flood control and wastewater treatment solutions, held in HCMC on August 9, a representative of the municipal authority said the city currently needs a large amount of capital for urban infrastructure and environment projects.

Spending on anti-flood projects accounts for an estimated VND96,300 billion, of which VND23,000 billion has been mobilized and the remaining VND73,300 billion is waiting for channeling, while the city’s budget is regulated to invest a mere VND16,400 billion into these projects.

Of the 17 projects, seven involve systems of wastewater treatment and collection for areas such as West Saigon, Binh Tan District, Tan Hoa-Lo Gom, Rach Cau Dua and Northwest Saigon, while 10 projects relate to the building of stone embankments; dredging the Thu Dao, Ong Be and Thay Tieu canals; restructuring Vinh Binh canal; and building drains to control tides in the Song Kinh and Rach Tra rivers and dykes surrounding the Saigon River from Vam Thuat to Song Kinh.

HCMC Vice Chairman Tran Vinh Tuyen said the municipal government hopes financial organizations and domestic and foreign investors will present solutions and engage in the projects under a public-private partnership format.

According to Nguyen Hoang Anh Dung, deputy director of the Steering Center of the HCMC Urban Flood Control Program, as the city is feeling the impact of climate change, such as higher rainfalls, higher-than-expected flood tides and landslides in the Saigon and Dong Nai rivers following rapid urbanization, HCMC’s drainage systems are only 60% efficient, even as multiple roads lack drainage systems.

As a result, residents still face submersion in case of heavy rainfall. Therefore, it is necessary to promptly invest in anti-flood and wastewater treatment projects as some experts have warned that HCMC is one of the 10 cities most affected by climate change, Dung said.

HCMC has completed three canal rehabilitation projects; built three wastewater treatment factories and drains, which only stretch 4,000 kilometers instead of the planned 6,000 kilometers; dredged 60 kilometers of canals; and built 26-kilometer dykes for Binh Thanh and Hoc Mon districts and District 12. The dykes should reportedly be longer than they are.

The municipal authorities have called on scientists, financial organizations and investors to participate in these projects under the build-lease-transfer, build-transfer-lease and build-transfer formats, Dung said, adding that for wastewater treatment projects, investors may recoup their capital by collecting fees for daily wastewater treatment. Collection regulation will be issued by the municipal government this year, Dung added.

Meanwhile, procedures and paperwork for site clearance, resettlement and investment remain complicated and continue to overlap, hindering investment and affecting plans and the progress of the projects.

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