Trần Huy Ánh. — Photo kinhtedoth.vn
Architect Trần Huy Ánh, a member of the Standing Committee of the Hà Nội Architect Association, talks to Kinh tế & Đô thị
(Economic & Urban Affairs)
on the need to uphold the law in all construction projects, big or small.
What are the main causes leading to the many law encroachments in some tall building projects?
The nature of any illegal housing construction activity should be considered as an economic activity. If any real estate inventor introduces his/her product to the market without a construction permit from an authorised agency, such a product should be considered an illegal product.
In reality, many investors have paid no heed to what is permitted or not permitted in housing construction law, but only focus on what economic benefits they will get. As a result, many project owners have added many more floors to their approved architectural designs to earn more money from their projects.
Many major urban areas, including Hà Nội and HCM City, nowadays have become too small due to the rapid increase of their population. This is a key reason why many investors decide to add more floors to original building designs which were approved by the authorities. However, most of the seriously encroaching cases occur in the hearts of urban areas, particularly big cities.
How should we handle violators?
The first thing the Government should do is to impose heavy sanctions on violators. The authorised agency will ask the project owner to pay a sum of money equal to the value of his/her project, plus the administrative fine. If the project owner does not follow the order, the authorised agency will confiscate all the construction areas which were not officially given a construction permit for public purposes and it is the responsibility of the project owner to compensate the buyers who already paid for the products.
But to solve the problem at its roots, we should have a “clean” management team who are upholding the law in the performance of their assignments.
Last but not least, we should adopt strict sanction rules on the violators.
Will you please talk a bit further on these sanction rules?
Even under French rule, Hà Nội authorities had already adopted strong sanctions on any public officials who abused their power for their own interest.
A very simple rule was applied to any person who wanted to work in land management in Hà Nội, he/she had to deposit 50 taels of gold as their commitment to uphold the law and devote their hearts and minds to the work they were assigned to do. If they failed to uphold their commitment, they would have lost all their deposited gold.
So in my opinion, this is a lesson for us to learn from our ancestors. I’m confident that if all public officers uphold their duties there will be no place for the mechanism of “ask and give” as nowadays. VNS