Ho Chi Minh City authorities will auction land to mobilise funds for some key and urgent projects, according to a newspaper report.

Nguoi Lao Dong (The Labourer) said this year the HCM City Land Development Centre had recommended to the People's Committee to sell 18 land lots that had been taken back from investors or were in the process of retrieval.

They were part of 44 that had to be retrieved this year due to various reasons like investors' violations of rules of tardy progress.

Those already retrieved were in Tan Thanh Tay and Tan Phu Trung Communes in Cu Chi district and Vinh Loc Commune in Binh Chanh district.

The Centre had called for speeding up the process of revoking nine lots, including those at 462-464 Nguyen Thi Minh Khai street, district 3; 234 Ly Tu Trong, District 1; and 93/2 Long Son, district 9.

Vo Cong Luc, its deputy director, said the Centre had hired a consultant to fix prices for the 18 lots while the Department of Justice will finalise procedures for the auction.

According to HCM City authorities, the auction of public lands were aimed at not only exploiting land effectively but also to make land management transparent.

Of the 44 land lots measuring 1,956ha, 23 will be taken back because investors used them for unauthorised purposes – like 205 Ben Chuong Duong, District 1, given to Ben Thanh Rubber Co, and 16/1 Au Co, district 11, given to Gia Dinh Textile Co.

Fifteen lots measuring 21.6ha will be retrieved because of land-use violations and the remaining seven, because of investors' tardy progress as concluded by the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment.

The City People's Committee has warned seven other investors that failure to complete their projects by July this year will see them losing their land./.