The ban on motorbike traffic in the inner-city areas of Hanoi City in 2030 may pose challenges for the residents, the European Chamber of Commerce in Vietnam (EuroCham) said at the recent annual Vietnam Business Forum in Hanoi.
Earlier in July 2017, the Hanoi City People's Council issued a resolution to ban motorbikes and scooters from entering inner-city areas by 2030 to ease congestion and air pollution.
EuroCham stressed that motorcycles remain a major mode of transportation among the local people thanks to its economy and flexibility, particularly in urban areas like Hanoi and HCMC, where there are many alleyways that public vehicles find hard to access.
Public traffic infrastructure in some major cities has yet to meet the travel demands of passengers, so the motorbike ban in central business districts in Hanoi City will create problems for the local people, VnEconomy news site reported.
EuroCham took Jakarta as an example, noting that the Indonesian government had issued a ban on motorbikes in the city but faced objections from residents as public transport systems in Jakarta still failed to meet demand. As such, the Indonesian government overturned the ban.
Apart from this, EuroCham pointed out that only banning motorbikes from entering inner-city areas is not an effective measure for easing traffic jams, reducing environmental pollution and minimizing traffic accidents in major cities.
EuroCham attributed these problems to inefficient management of vehicles using roads, poor driving skills and limited knowledge and awareness of traffic safety.
The ban on motorbikes in downtown Hanoi, though still a decade from now, may also pose challenges for the motorcycle manufacturing sector, which has significantly contributed to the country’s socioeconomic growth over the past decade.
As a result, EuroCham proposed the governments of major cities consider more effective measures for resolving these issues. It is necessary to conduct research on motorbike traffic and learn about public transport systems used by other countries that boast a modern public traffic infrastructure.
Apart from this, the competent agencies should review the needs of residents and create a master plan with minimal impact on residents’ daily activities and the economy.
Also, EuroCham proposed managing or banning old motorcycles, which are the main source of air pollution from traffic; learning about India’s experience with banning motorbikes aged over 20 years; and raising awareness of traffic safety. SGT
People have been advised to restrict outdoors exercise, close windows and doors, and wear protective masks to protect themselves from PM2.5 fine dust.
The Ministry of Transport has proposed adding standards on motorbike exhaust emissions and an emissions control roadmap to the amendments to the Law on Road Traffic, Thanh Nien newspaper reported.