PM Nguyen Xuan Phuc at the working session. (Source: VNA)

Hanoi (VNA) – Complaints and petitions regarding the Thu Thiem new urban area in Ho Chi Minh City must be settled in line with laws and policies to ensure legitimate interests of residents, said Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc.

Speaking at a working session with representatives of relevant ministries and agencies and the HCM City People’s Committee in Hanoi on May 15, the PM said it is necessary to harmonise interests of the State, investors and people.

He highlighted investigations into incidents and dialogues with the public in order to reach consensus on settlement methods, saying incidents should be addressed following set roadmaps.

PM Phuc assigned the Government Inspectorate to clarify complaints about land reclamation, compensation and resettlement support, while proposing settlement measures in accordance with legal regulations. Outcomes of the work should be reported to the PM before July 15, 2018.

The Ministries of Natural Resources and Environment, Construction and Justice, and the HCM City People’s Committee were requested to closely coordinate with the Government Inspectorate in reviewing and handling complaints.

The leader also asked the municipal People’s Committee to implement suitable policies towards local people, especially residents who have yet been relocated although they had handed over their land to the project.

Covering a total area of 657 hectares, the Thu Thiem new urban area is located on Thu Thiem peninsula in HCM City’s District 2, which faces downtown District 1 across Saigon River.

Approved by the Government in 1996, the proposed financial district and mixed-use urban area of HCM City is set to become the largest inner-city development in Southeast Asia.

Thu Thiem will relieve some of the pressures the city currently faces. The infrastructure within the city’s existing central business district is starting to overload due to rapid growth during the last three decades, city authorities have said. 

According to a master plan, the new urban area has five main areas: the central core, the northern residential area, the residential area along Mai Chi Tho Avenue, the eastern residential area, and the delta area in the south.

To develop such a project, it took more than 10 years for site clearance of most of Thu Thiem peninsula, with as many as 15,000 households being resettled.

In a document sent to the Prime Minister in 2015, the city authorities said total costs in the new urban area for clearance compensation and resettlement, technical infrastructure, and loan interest had reached more than 29 trillion VND (1.27 billion USD).

Of the figure, about 12 trillion VND is from commercial credit institutions, resulting in an interest of around 2.9 billion VND per day.-VNA