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HCM City officials slam irresponsible use of public lands

Update: June, 29/2018 - 07:00
An unused plot of public land in HCM City’s District 2. — VNS File Photo.
Viet Nam News

HCM CITY  --  Public lands in HCM City are used inefficiently, with many remaining unused despite being identified under urban plans, according to the city Department of Natural Resources and Environment.

Speaking at a meeting on public land administration on Wednesday Nguyễn Toàn Thắng, its director, said irresponsible management and use by entities that have received lands from the State agencies and lack of inspections by relevant agencies are to blame for this.

According to the department, authorities have approved the use of 10,832 plots of public land.

However, due to the beneficiaries’ low financial and business capacity, many of the lands have been used in other ways, such as building accommodation for their staff, leasing them out and others, it said.

Inspections by the HCM City Inspection Agency of just State enterprises found violations related to the use of 99 plots and recovered VNĐ11.5 billion (over US$500,000) worth of lands.

Of 197 plots of land the government decided to take back from allottees 28 have yet to be repossessed while 883 of 1,507 plots of land to be auctioned have not gone under the hammer.

Võ Công Lc, director of the HCM City Land Fund Development Centre, said delay in compensation payment is the main cause behind the delay in auctioning them.

Nguyễn Văn Dũng, head of the People’s Council’s economics – budget department, said to better manage land resources in the city, the Department of Natural Resources and Environment should amend land use plans.

It should ensure that public lands better serve the purposes of education, public health, environment and raising people’s living standards.

Too many land management agencies

Administration of public lands should be improved to increase the city’s revenues, Thắng told a People’s Council meeting recently.

“There are too many agencies managing public lands and this leads to poor management.

The city should have only one agency, which would be fully responsible for the management and monetisation of public lands, he said.

Many agencies occupy large plots of lands and pay little or nothing as rent, and in most cases leave them unused or sublet them out at much higher rates, he said.

“Many businesses place their own interests above the common interest. Despite their inefficient use of land, they insist on keeping it at their disposal.”

Encroachment of public lands, resultant disputes and illegal sale of public lands to private individuals are rife even as many build-transfer projects stall due to lack of lands for handing over to investors as compensation, Thắng said. — VNS



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