Vietnam to borrow $2 bln to fortify Mekong Delta against climate change

By Viet Tuan   March 31, 2021 | 08:51 pm PT
Vietnam to borrow $2 bln to fortify Mekong Delta against climate change
An intersection of the Lo Te-Rach Soi expressway in the Mekong Delta. Photo by VnExpress/Cuu Long.
Vietnam plans to borrow around $2 billion to develop the Mekong Delta, Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc said.

The money, to come from the World Bank, Germany and France, would be used for the sustainable development of the Mekong Delta in the face of climate change, he said at a government meeting Wednesday.

The Ministry of Planning and Investment has been instructed to make plans for specific projects, and the Ministry of Finance has been tasked with amending a decree on providing poor localities, including those in the delta, with funds from ODA and foreign concessional loans.

Phuc, who chaired a conference on sustainably developing the delta last month, said his government would invest in infrastructure in the delta, including to facilitate air, land, sea, and rail transport.

A 2017 resolution on sustainable and climate-resilient development of the region seeks to make the delta better socially organized, increase its per capita income and ensure its people’s livelihood. It also aims to increase the rate of ecological farming and farming using modern technologies to over 80 percent, and to increase forest coverage in the region to over 9 percent.

For long the delta has been Vietnam's rice granary and aquaculture hub, but has in recent years suffered from lack of freshwater, erosion and floods.

Several studies in the last decade predicted it would sink soon due to rising sea levels caused by the climate crisis.

The 40,577-square-kilometer delta is home to 21.49 million people.

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