Friday, December 15 2017

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Dirty factories won’t leave Hà Nội

Update: June, 20/2017 - 09:00
A worker operates machines at the Kim Đông Xuân Textile Factory in Hà Nội’s Hai Bà Trưng District. The plant was asked to move following outrage over smoke and cotton dust released into nearby residential quarters. — VNS Photo Việt Thanh
Viet Nam News

HÀ NỘI — Hà Nội authorities have planned to move polluting facilities from the inner city, however, the process has been delayed, with many companies reluctant to give up their land to authorities and relocate, Tiền Phong (Vanguard) newspaper reported.

According to plans, polluting facilities’ land in the inner city will be reused for social utilities. As many as 117 facilities in 12 districts in the city are on the list for urgent relocation by 2020. However, up to now, only 32 facilities have compiled plans to move.

According to Hai Bà Trưng District’s People’s Committee, authorities asked the Kim Đông Xuân Textile Factory on Minh Khai Street of Vĩnh Tuy Ward to move following outrage over smoke and cotton dust released to nearby residential quarters. A new factory has been built, however, the company still kept a production line for promotion purposes, with the factory continuing to operate and pollute. The city lacks measures to force these factories to move.

Lâm Anh Tuấn, vice chairman of Hai Bà Trưng District said that it was difficult to make enterprises voluntarily hand over land and move. City authorities should assign agencies to force companies to relocate when they have a new location and support to move.

To accelerate the process, the city must issue an administrative decision to force delaying companies like Kim Đông Xuân Textile Company to map out relocation plans or take coercive measures, Tuấn said.

While the city has yet to penalise any violating companies, Hai Bà Trưng District People’s Committee still conducts regular inspections on environmental protection efforts.

To issue a penalty or cease the companies’ operation, signatures from authorised agencies must be collected. Therefore, punishment is difficult to mete out, Tuấn said.

Mai Trọng Thái, head of the Environmental Division under Hà Nội’s Department of Natural Resources and Environment, said that preparations for land funds to support companies dictate the speed of relocation.

Relocation cannot be completed over a short period of time. The city aims to finish the process by 2020, Thái said.

According to Nguyễn Nguyên Quân, head of the Urban Division under Hà Nội’s People’s Council, the relocation process has been delayed for various reasons.

Authorised agencies haven’t paid due attention to the relocation and lack mechanisms from the central to local levels to encourage companies to move out. They are also struggling with  finding a balance between benefits of the companies and those of the public, he said.

The city needs to initiate specific mechanisms and figure out open administrative procedures to encourage companies to relocate, he said. — VNS

 

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