Vietnam’s total property losses from storms and flooding during the last three years exceeded 50 trillion VND (about 2.36 billion USD), half of the figure was recorded in 2013.

The figures were released at a conference held in Ho Chi Minh City on December 17 to introduce the Law on Natural Disaster Prevention and collect opinions about a number of draft decrees on the implementation of the law.

According to the draft decree on the establishment of a fund for natural disaster prevention, businesses and all individuals over the age of 18 have to make financial contributions to the fund at different rates.

The General Department of Irrigation under the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development said that the establishment of the fund is to ensure financial resources for localities to cope with natural disasters.

Vietnam is one of five countries considered to be the most vulnerable to climate change, with 70 percent of the population affected by natural disasters. The country loses 1.5 percent of GDP each year because of the impact of climate change.

Deputy Chief of the Office of the Central Committee for Flood and Storm Control Van Phu Chinh said recently that the country has shifted its policy from countering natural disasters to prevention, as shown in the promulgation of the Law on Natural Disaster Prevention, as well as many legal documents and policies in the field.-VNA