|The council discussed a report on the erection of President Ho Chi Minh's statue in front of the council and People's Committee offices in the city and the need for spinning off the tourism department from the Department of Culture, Sports and Tourism.— Photo congan
HCM City (VNS) — The extraordinary 15th meeting of the HCM City People's Council's 8th session opened on Thursday to consider reports and statements from the People's Committee.
The council discussed a report on the erection of President Ho Chi Minh's statue in front of the council and People's Committee offices in the city and the need for spinning off the tourism department from the Department of Culture, Sports and Tourism.
People's Committee vice chairman Hua Ngoc Thuan said work on the statue would be speeded up to ensure it is erected before the 40th anniversary of unification on April 30 next year.
The existing statue of the late president with children will be moved to the Children's Palace in District 3.
The city wants the contractors awarded the work of upgrading the stretch of Nguyen Hue Street from Le Thanh Ton to Le Loi – where the statue will be put up — to complete it by the end of February 2015.
He tabled a report on why the city needs to set up a separate department for tourism, a key industry that makes a high contribution to the city's revenues.
But increasing demand and fierce competition from neighbouring countries are challenges the tourism industry needs to address.
After establishing, the Department will include 75 people in hotels; tourism; planning, research and development; tourism information, inspection and office.
The council also reviewed a demand for enacting more preferential policies for South Korean company Samsung's investment project in the city's Saigon High-Tech Park.
The committee petitioned the council – the legislature — to allocate an additional VND162 billion (US$8 million) a year on developing human resources in the Fatherland Front and other socio-political organisations at the grassroots level and spending at the hamlet and village levels.
The current annual allocation for the former is VND370 billion ($16 million).
Vice chairwoman of the council, Truong Thi Anh, told the meeting that Truong Vi Kien, council member from District 8 and general director of Tan Cuong Thanh company, was arrested for commercial fraud.
The Council standing committee has already decided to suspend him. — VNS