Secretary of the HCM City Party’s Committee Nguyen Thien Nhan (R) and JICA President Shinichi Kitaoka (Photo: VNA)

HCM City (VNA) – Secretary of the HCM City Party Committee Nguyen Thien Nhan received visiting President of the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) Shinichi Kitaoka on September 13.

At the reception, Nhan spoke highly of JICA’s assistance in promoting Vietnam’s economic growth and enhancing its international competitiveness through policy support, infrastructure development and State administration improvement.

JICA has supported HCM City in projects on urban planning, environmental protection and improvement of people’s living conditions, thus contributing to fostering the strategic partnership between Vietnam and Japan, he said.

The municipal leader revealed that the city is facing numerous opportunities and challenges in its current development, especially climate change that affects local environment and causes flooding amid degrading technical infrastructure.

To solve this problem, HCM City has been building water drainage systems and tide prevention sewers, he said, adding that the city wants to receive JICA support in constructing the works in the central areas and then suburban districts in order to ease flooding and improve the environment.

Introducing the guest to an innovative urban area project in the city, Nhan said that this is an opportunity for Japanese investors who are strong in technology to engage in developing solar power systems serving public activities and special transport systems linking universities and hi-tech parks.

He also wished that JICA will continue assisting the city’s metro route No 1 (Ben Thanh-Suoi Tien) and vowed to remove all difficulties facing investors and businesses in order to ensure the progress of the project.

For his part, Shinichi Kitaoka said Vietnam and Japan share a lot of similarities in culture and religion. In addition to their extensive strategic partnership, the two countries boast close collaboration between localities and businesses.

In the coming time, JICA will continue supporting HCM City in responding to climate change and reducing flooding by accelerating a non-refundable aid project between Osaka and HCM City on improving waste water drainage systems in the Vietnamese locality, he said.

He expressed his belief that HCM City will continue to be an attractive destination of Japanese investors, especially in the fields of health, transport, technical infrastructure, environment, and building of smart city and innovative urban areas.

Over the past years, JICA has engaged in a number of major projects in Vietnam, including building Hai Van tunnel, upgrading National Road 5 and building Phy My and O Mon thermal power plants.

In HCM City alone, it has been involved in the metro route No 1, East-West avenue, Ben Luc-Long Thanh expressway, Binh Khanh and Phuoc Khanh bridges, as well as improvement of water environment and water drainage and wastewater treatment systems.-VNA