A ceremony to launch the construction of facilities of Phase I of the Northern Mountainous Urban Programme Project was held in Thai Nguyen city in the northern province of Thai Nguyen on January 21.

The event drew the participation of Deputy Prime Minister Hoang Trung Hai, representatives from the Ministry of Construction and the World Bank, and provincial leaders.

Speaking at the ceremony, Deputy Prime Minister Hoang Trung Hai underscored the project’s aim to enhance urban infrastructure and environmental protection efforts, as well as improving the livelihoods of local residents and ensure sustainable socio-economic development.

He spoke highly of the provincial preparations to implement Phase I (2015-2016) of the project in a timely manner, adding that the Ministry of Construction, investors, and project management boards need to clearly stipulate their missions and roles to assure the programme’s quality and progress.

The Northern Mountainous Urban Programme Project was approved by the Prime Minister in Decision 189/QD-TTg on January 25, 2014.

The project is implemented in the seven mountainous provinces of Thai Nguyen, Bac Kan, Cao Bang, Tuyen Quang, Dien Bien, Hoa Binh, and Yen Bai, costing 301.8 million USD. Of the amount, 250 million USD was sourced from the World Bank and the remaining capital was funded by the State.

The project in Thai Nguyen province, worth 80.5 million USD, will be carried out over six years (2015-2020) and includes upgrades to roads and bridges, nursery school construction, and the establishment of resident resettlement areas.

The project will set the foundation to develop sustainable northern mountainous urban areas as well as strengthening the capacity of local authorities for urban planning and management. In addition, it will become a technical infrastructure model to be applied in other cities.-VNA