Delegates raised at a conference in Ho Chi Minh City on October 22 suggestions to a project on strengthening traffic safety on the southern region’s highways before it will be submitted for the Government’s approval.

The 100 million USD project aims to minimise traffic accidents and their damage on 21 national roads in 19 southern localities while promoting local traffic infrastructure development, public awareness of traffic safety, traffic compliance and first-aid services for traffic accident victims.

The project should receive priority for early implementation to reduce traffic accidents, especially road accidents, said participants at the conference jointly held by the Traffic Safety Project Management Unit (TSPMU) under the Ministry of Transport and the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA).

The number of casualties caused by traffic accidents is down but this figure is unstable and unsustainable, they noted, adding that the project should allocate its funds rationally based on each locality’s specific characteristics in line with local authorities’ solutions to cut the number of accidents in a distinct and sustainable manner.

According to the TSPMU, the number of traffic accidents in the southeastern region makes up nearly 50 percent of the national figure while the Mekong Delta accounts for 35.25 percent.

In addition to the project awaiting approval, JICA has provided 65 million USD in Official Development Assistance (ODA) to Vietnam to help realise a 70 million USD project in the 2009-2014 period to enhance traffic safety on 10 national roads in northern localities, and bring about obvious improvements in road safety.-VNA