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|The World Bank (WB) Board of Executive Directors yesterday approved a US$194.36 million credit plan to help four secondary cities in Vietnam build critically-needed municipal infrastructure and strengthen urban planning.- Photo ndh.vn|
The Dynamic Cities Integrated Development Project aims to increase access to improved urban services in Ky Anh in Ha Tinh Province, Tinh Gia in Thanh Hoa Province, Hai Duong in Hai Duong Province and Yen Bai in Yen Bai Province.
Approximately 200,000 residents are expected to benefit directly from the project, of which more than half are women.
The project will help reduce flood risks, improve sanitation, reduce travel times on new and improved roads and develop high-quality public spaces.
The project will also improve connectivity to industrial parks, export processing zones, commercial establishments and tourist attractions, benefiting workers and merchants as well as visitors.
These improvements in turn are expected to help boost productivity, enable exports, create more jobs, and help generate sustained economic growth.
“Secondary cities are set to play an increasingly important role in Vietnam’s growth poles through efficient movement of goods, people, services and information,” said Ousmane Dione, WB Country Director for Vietnam.
“These four selected cities have demonstrated significant potential to become dynamic economic hubs at the provincial and regional levels. This operation would help to fill the infrastructure gap by providing much-needed financing to deliver quality services with lessons and best practices gained from World Bank engagements in other cities around the world,” he said.
A major problem in these cities is the uneven access to basic services, including drainage systems, wastewater collection and treatment and road networks. This has resulted in increasing traffic congestion, flooding and the deterioration or lack of public spaces. In addition, all four cities are either located along the coast or in mountainous areas, making them vulnerable to disasters and the impacts of climate change.
The project will help address these problems with both structural and non-structural support, including a series of infrastructure investments in each city, and technical assistance to strengthen the capacities of the cities to adopt a comprehensive and integrated urban planning approach that links physical development to long-term socio-economic strategies, climate change adaptation and disaster risk management plans.
The total cost of the project is $276.17 million, of which $194.36 million will come from the International Development Association.