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VietNamNews

Urban development faces challenges

Update: December, 09/2013 - 08:49

View of Vung Tau City in the southern province of Ba Ria-Vung Tau. Viet Nam is reforming its laws and policies to improve management of issues relating to urban development, particularly urban planning. — VNA/VNS Photo Huy Hung

HA NOI (VNS) — Urban administration, citizens and enterprises played important roles in developing cities, and they could further help prevent the uncontrolled emergence of unplanned communities, said Minister of Construction Trinh Dinh Dung.

Speaking at the 37th congress of the International Urban Development Association, held in Ha Noi last week, Dung said that Viet Nam was improving its legal framework and policies to better-manage issues which related to urban development, especially urban planning.

At present, Viet Nam has about 765 cities and towns with urbanisation rates of 32.45 per cent. They contribute to 70 per cent of gross domestic production, helping improve people's living standards and driving the country's economic growth.

However, the urbanisation process in Viet Nam revealed problems, including poor planning, improper infrastructure and environmental pollution.

Moreover, a majority of Viet Nam's cities, towns and major industrial zones are located in low lying or coastal areas, which are vulnerable to the impacts of climate change.

During the congress, entitled "Urban development in a changing world", Dung emphasised that as one of the countries most vulnerable to climate change impacts, Viet Nam targeted sustainable urban development.

"To do so, both short-term, medium-term and long-term solutions are needed to boost urban development in close connection with other national strategies, including those on housing, traffic and environment," he said.

Chairman of International Urban Development Association Budiarsa Sastrawinata said that, like other developing countries, Viet Nam faced many challenges in developing urban areas, such as a shortage of resources.

Also, the migration from rural to urban areas placed more pressure on existing infrastructure, thus affecting the quality of lives of citizens there.

Dung said that each of these factors – economic, social and environmental – must be committed to, in order to develop in sustainable ways and ensure the sustainability of urban planning and development.

Viet Nam was on that track, Dung said, noting improvements in Housing Laws, Laws on Real Estate Trade and the national strategy on housing for low-income earners in urban areas. — VNS



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