South Korea backs Hue smart city plans with $13 mln

By Nguyen Quy   January 23, 2021 | 07:21 pm PT
South Korea backs Hue smart city plans with $13 mln
An aerial view of Hue Imperial Citadel, a major tourist attraction in Hue in central Vietnam. Photo by Shutterstock/anhuy.
South Korea has agreed to fund with $13 million efforts made by Hue to turn itself into a smart cultural and tourism city.

The funding will be routed through the South Korea International Cooperation Agency (Koica).

It will be used to implement a five-year (2021-2025), $14.8 million project. With Koica, a government agency that specializes in implementing non-refundable aid programs for developing countries, providing $13 million, the rest will comprise counterpart funding from the central province of Thua Thien-Hue, of which Hue is the capital.

The project aims to build a smart tourism information system, develop an urban cultural tourism center and expand the walking zone network in Hue in order to boost tourism in the former imperial capital.

The project will also cover installation of smart lighting and surveillance systems along the banks of the Huong (Perfume) River and building public administration capacity in tourism development and urban management.

Hue, the seat of the Nguyen Dynasty from 1802 until the end of its reign in 1945, stands out from other parts of the country with its Imperial Citadel and royal tombs that have made it the top tourist destination in Thua Thien-Hue Province for years.

The town has just one pedestrian zone now, comprising the streets of Vo Thi Sau, Chu Van An and Pham Ngu Lao in Phu Hoi Ward. The zone was put into operation in September 2017 after provincial authorities green lighted a proposal to create spaces for locals and tourists to hang out at nights.

The province attracted 4.8 million visitors in 2019, up 11 percent over 2018, and provincial authorities announced plans to open more pedestrian zones to the north and south of the Huong River, develop public transportation means and install environmentally-friendly toilets, apart from trash bins to prevent littering.

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