The Ministry of Transport is calling for financial assistance from enterprises and philanthropists to build more bridges in remote and poor areas under a programme launched on January 9, 2014 and to run until 2017.

The programme aims to build over 4,000 bridges at a total cost of around 8,300 billion VND (389 million USD). So far 127 businesses have donated 310 billion VND to the scheme.

“Though the life of most people has changed massively since the launch of the Doi Moi (renovation), a fraction of the population in remote areas are still living in poor conditions and use dangerous means of transportation,” Deputy Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc said at an event on January 17 to raise money for the programme.

He applauded the Ministry of Transport and the National Transport Safety Committee for the initiative, which is in line with the Government’s plan of action to carry out the Ethnic Affairs Strategy to 2020 that set a goal of developing road networks allowing smooth and safe local and inter-regional traffic throughout the year.

Earlier, the construction of 186 suspended bridges already began in the extremely difficult areas in 20 mountainous provinces in Northern, Central and Central Highlands regions.

Around 86 bridges are scheduled for completion ahead of the Tet (Lunar New Year) Festival and the remaining are set to finish ahead of the flooding season this year.-VNA