HCM City raises environmental protection, parking fees hinh anh 1HCM City will raise environmental protection fees on July 1 and parking fees on August 1 (Photo: VNA)

HCM City (VNS/VNA) - New environmental protection fees are expected to reduce the volume of industrial wastewater in Ho Chi Minh City, while higher parking fees on city centre streets will curb traffic congestion, according to the city’s Transport Department.

The city expects to collect several million USD through the new fees, the department said.

The calculation method now being used for assessing environmental protection fees does not correspond with the volume of discharged industrial wastewater, according to the department.

Beginning on July 1, the city’s Department of Natural Resources and Environment will apply a new method to calculate fees for industrial wastewater discharge.

Last year, the city collected a total of 8 billion VND (350,000 USD) from environmental protection fees. However, with the new calculation method, the city is expected to collect 60 billion VND (2.7 million USD).

The city will collect a fixed fee of 1.5 million VND (70 USD) per year from companies that discharge under five cubic metres of industrial wastewater per day.

For companies that discharge more than five cubic metres, the fee will be 1.5 million VND plus K coefficient (wastewater flow). The fee will be proportional to the pollutant content found in wastewater.

The fees also apply to healthcare establishments, which discharge about 22,260 cubic metres of medical waste per day, while solid waste treatment establishments discharge 7,880cu.m per day, according to the city’s Department of Natural Resources and Environment.

From August 1, HCM City will also raise parking fees for automobiles that park on 35 streets in the centre of the city.

The aim is to restrict the number of private vehicles and encourage use of public transport, according to the Transport Department.

The city estimates it can collect 31 billion VND (1.4 million USD) a month from the new parking fees.

The new parking fee will be calculated by the hour. Vehicles are currently charged a maximum of 5,000 VND.

Under the new method, there will be two kinds of fees, depending on vehicle types.

The first is for automobiles with up to nine seats and trucks weighing up to 1.5 tonnes; the second is for automobiles with 10 -16 seats and trucks weighing between 1.5 tonnes and 2.5 tonnes.

The parking fee for the first group will be 20,000-25,000 VND per hour for the first and second hour; 25,000-30,000 VND for the third and fourth hour; and 30,000-35,000 VND from the fifth hour onwards. The fees for parking overnight will be 120,000-150,000 VND.

For the second group of vehicles, the fee will be 25,000-30,000 VND per hour for the first and second hour; 30,000-35,000 VND for the next two hours; and 35,000-40,000 VND from the fifth hour onwards. Overnight parking will cost 150,000-180,000 VND.

Parking software apps on smartphones can be used by residents to pay the new parking fees.

Ngo Hai Duong, head of the city’s Transport Department’s land transport infrastructure use and management, said the parking software app will be operated by the Viettel Group.

Local residents can look for and book parking spots on a map available on the parking app.

"The app will also allow the city to better manage parking sites and hire parking employees," Duong said.-VNS/VNA