Drought is forecast to strike many parts of central Vietnam this year, leaving negative impacts on locals and water resources in the region, the Saigon Times Daily reported.

Water shortages in the region may last until August. According to the National Centre for Hydro-meteorological Forecasting, rainfalls from Nghe An to Ninh Thuan provinces would be much lower than the average of previous years.

Drought would cause river water levels to fall by 10-40% compared to previous years and lead saltwater to make its way into inland areas from next month till August, according to the centre.

In contrast, the rainy season is forecast to begin in May in the south and the Central Highlands region and rainfalls are predicted to intensify from August.

Actually, rains occurred in Ho Chi Minh City in late April , submerging Hong Bang, An Duong Vuong, Tan Hoa, Luy Ban Bich and other streets in districts 6 and Binh Tan for hours.

Explaining heavy flooding after early rains, the Ho Chi Minh City Steering Centre of the Urban Flood Control Programme (SCFC) said an ongoing project to dredge Tan Hoa-Lo Gom Canal in District 6 and upgrade nearby streets slowed drainage.

Chairman of the Ho Chi Minh City’s People Committee Le Hoang Quan told a seminar in March that flooding in the city had not been resolved effectively.

SCFC plans to report to the Ho Chi Minh City People’s Committee a project to build more than 30 large lakes in suburban areas and hundreds of smaller lakes in inner-city areas to hold rainwater and thus mitigate flooding.

Quan said that Ho Chi Minh City spent nearly 1.58 trillion VND (74.8 million USD) dealing with flooding in 2011-2013.