The support policies for residents affected by the Thu Thiem New Urban Area project in District 2 will not put them at a disadvantage, but will even benefit them, said HCMC Vice Chairman Vo Van Hoan.
|The press briefing on August 14, on the Thu Thiem New Urban Area attracts a lot of attention from the local media|
The HCMC government on August 14 organized a press briefing to announce the execution of its plans to act on the Government Inspectorate's conclusion on the project.
Hoan told the assembled reporters that the prices of their land would be calculated based upon the current market prices, not those set 10 years ago.
The prices have been compared with those of land in adjacent projects, Hoan said, adding that the city leaders understand the difficulties which residents have faced for a long period of time.
It is hard to calculate and compensate for their emotional loss. Nevertheless, the city has developed 10 additional policies for them.
As soon as the Government Inspectorate released Announcement 1483/TB-TTCP on September 4 last year on the results of an inspeciton into the Thu Thiem project, the HCMC government worked out a plan to act on the Government Inspectorate's findings.
Specifically, the city drew a map of the 4.3-hectare area in Binh An Ward identified as being outside the approved boundary of the project, with 331 households whose land was taken back by the city.
Nguyen Thanh Nha, director of the municipal Department of Planning and Architecture, said the city on August 13 approved the boundary of the 4.3-hectare area, as a foundation to work out support policies.
Then, a working team led by District 2 chairman Nguyen Phuoc Hung was established to propose aid policies for the affected residents. Hung said he had met with 305 households in the area.
In addition, the District 2 government will handle complaints and lawsuits by households outside the project’s boundary in line with the Law on Complaints.
HCMC Vice Chairman Hoan said the city government had consulted with the prime minister, the Government Inspectorate, the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment and the Ministry of Construction over the map of the 4.3-hectare area.
The area has been expanded to 4.39 hectares to ensure the benefits of all residents.
Thus, the boundary of the 4.3-hectare area has been established and the support policies have been completed and will be sent to the municipal People’s Council late this month, Hoan said.
Answering a question on the return of VND26 trillion, which the city had advanced from its own budget for compensating and aiding those relocating to make room for the Thu Thiem project, deputy director of the HCMC Department of Finance Tran Mai Phuong said the money had already been spent on resettlement and site clearance compensation for the project.
On August 8, the city proposed the prime minister allow it to continue the project. After getting the approval, the department and the relevant agencies will propose the municipal government add it into the city's mid-term public investment plan.
As soon as the capital is disbursed, the project management board will complete procedures to take back the money.
Nguyen The Minh, head of the Investment and Construction Authority for the Thu Thiem New Urban Area (ICA), said the city had handed over land to four projects without holding auctions.
Of which, the investors of the 11.5-hectare monitoring tower project and the 4.8-hectare Song Viet complex project had paid the land use fees. The Government Inspectorate asked the HCMC government to recalculate the fees.
Additionally, the city has suspended the five-hectare smart complex project whose investor is Lotte Group and the 20-hectare sport and entertainment complex project to be developed by Vingroup as they have yet to pay the land use fees.
Thu Thiem New Urban Area was originally expected to become a new commercial, financial, cultural and tourism hub of the city. The project was not aimed at real estate business, but develop public facilities, such as a central square, a riverside park, a financial center and an international exhibition and convention center.
The project was planned to cover 657 hectares of land, including only 194.3 hectares for commercial purposes.
The new urban area, when in place, would open up opportunities for the development of the eastern part of the city and help the city to walk abreast with modern cities worldwide.
The city has compensated nearly VND17.5 trillion for 14,353 out of 14,357 households affected by the project and recalled 715.97 hectares of land. The support levels for residents in Thu Thiem are higher than those in other projects.
HCMC reports difficulties reclaiming State money from Thu Thiem project
The HCMC government has written to the central Government to report that it is difficult to have more than VND26.3 trillion (US$1.1 billion) returned, which the city had advanced from its own budget for the Thu Thiem New Urban Area project in District 2, as the money has already been paid to affected households and organizations.
According to the Government Inspectorate’s conclusions on the Thu Thiem New Urban Area project, the HCMC government must return VND26.3 trillion to the State budget this year. If not, the inspectorate will transfer the case to the Investigation Agency, under the Ministry of Public Security.
However, the money had been spent on resettlement and site clearance compensation for the project.
Therefore, the city proposed the Government assign the Ministry of Planning and Investment to coordinate with various agencies to help the city conduct procedures for the compensation and resettlement work.
In addition, the city expects the prime minister to allow it to continue with the site clearance, compensation and resettlement plan for the Thu Thiem New Urban Area project, as approved in 2010, and add the costs of the site clearance, compensation and resettlement for households in some 4.3 hectares in Binh An Ward, which was outside the zoned boundary of the project. SGT
Residents who had their land illegally taken by the local authorities have been told they will finally be compensated – at current market value.
The HCM City People’s Council has urged the city government to submit a long-awaited compensation policy for affected residents in the Thu Thiem new urban area in District 2 to the council for approval.