Officials and experts from Vietnam and the Netherlands gathered at a seminar in Ho Chi Minh City on Mar. 31 and Apr. 1, to discuss planning issues for the Mekong delta.

Dutch Crown Prince Willem-Alexander attended the seminar.

At the seminar, the fourth of its kind, participants talked about a zoning plan for 13 Mekong delta cities and provinces, focusing on issues relating to water resources.

They discussed plans to regulate floods in order to mitigate the impact of rising sea levels and climate change, as well as prevent drought and salt intrusion.

Due to impacts from the upper reaches of the river and climate change, water flows to the lower part of the river have reduced sharply. Participants talked about measures to preserve water and to ensure fresh water for Vietnam ’s Mekong delta.

An urban planning scheme for the region with the application of geographic information systems (GIS) was also discussed.

Participants then made an assessment of the implementation of Mekong delta planning and worked out a plan for 2011./.