People in the Mekong Delta province of Tra Vinh have donated over 40,000 sq. m of land for the construction of roads, irrigation canals and schools in response to the national new rural area construction programme.

The land donation, worth over 21 billion VND (982,000 USD), has made it easier for the improvement of infrastructural facilities in the province as required by the programme, According to Huynh Kim Ngan, Deputy Head of the Rural Development branch under the provincial Department of Agriculture and Rural Development.

In 2014, the province had 670km of inter-communal roads asphalted, 538km of inter-hamlet concreted and 337km of alleyway and 553km of irrigation canals constructed with a total investment of 536 billion VND (25 million USD).

As a result, two communes have been recognised as “new” rural areas and 12 more expect to be granted the title by the end of 2014.

The national new rural area construction programme, launched in 2010, defines 19 criteria for standard new-style rural areas, including measures to build infrastructure, improve production capacity, build public facile.ties, protect the landscape and environment, and promote local traditions and cultural identities.-VNA