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Friday, July 1, 2022

WB offers US$126.9 million to strengthen infrastructure in Mekong Delta

The Saigon Times

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HCMC – The Government of Vietnam and the World Bank (WB) have signed a financing agreement worth US$126.9 million to improve access to infrastructure and connectivity and reduce flood risks in the urban core of Vinh Long City in the Mekong Delta.

According to the WB, Vinh Long City, strategically located along the economic corridor that connects HCMC to the Mekong Delta, has great potential to become a regional hub for agribusiness, trade and tourism. 

However, flooding and poor environmental sanitation are major impediments holding back the city’s development. Located at a low elevation on the Tien River plain, about 60% of the city is prone to flooding.

The Vinh Long City Urban Development and Enhanced Climate Resilience Project will help eliminate physical constraints to development in the urban core area by establishing flood control systems, drainage, wastewater collection and treatment, and investment in key urban roads.

“Strengthening urban infrastructure is key to a city’s ability to unlock its potential, safeguard its gains and withstand multiple shocks,” said World Bank Acting Country Director for Vietnam Rahul Kitchlu. “Our support will empower Vinh Long City to pursue ambitious investments to build greater resilience to climate and disaster risks.”

Nearly half of the project’s funding will be used to develop flood risk mitigation measures, including embankments and tidal sluice gates, rehabilitation and upgrades of the canal and drainage system, and investments in green infrastructure to retain and infiltrate rainwater. 

The project will also support the building of three strategic roads that will improve inter-city connectivity and further enhance the city’s flood protection capacity.

This project will further improve urban management and planning through investments in data, information and communication technology. Key components will include an integrated flood risk management information system, a geospatial data sharing platform, information, education, and communication campaigns, and improved transportation management.

The US$126.9 million credit is being provided through the World Bank’s International Development Association. 

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