NA approves $1b for airport land clearance

Saturday, Nov 25, 2017 09:44

A model of the Long Thanh International Airport. The National Assembly on Friday passed a Resolution on the feasibility report for land clearance, compensation and resettlement as a component of the mega project. - File Photo

The National Assembly (NA) on Friday approved a VND23 trillion (roughly US$1 billion) budget for land clearance at the Long Thanh International Airport.

The approval, which garnered the support of over 90 per cent of delegates, notched another milestone for the mega project first approved in June 2015.

Besides VND5 trillion previously allocated for the project under the 2016-20 medium-term public investment plan, the NA agreed on using VND15 trillion from the VND80 trillion State investment fund for major national major projects. The rest will come from the collection of land use fees and sale of first resettlement apartments.

The project plan says a total of 5,399 hectares will be cleared to develop the airport. Of this, 5,000 hectares will be used for building the airport, 379 hectares as the Loc An – Binh Son resettlement areas and 20 hectares for a cemetery.

The land clearance is scheduled to be completed by 2021.

Prevent land speculation

On Wednesday, Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc asked that land management be enhanced in the areas surrounding the Long Thanh International Airport project.

Phuc asked the People’s Committee of the southern province of Dong Nai, where the airport will be built, to implement measures to prevent speculation, illegal land and housing transfers and illegal constructions. He warned of people trying to take undue advantage of the Government’s land clearance policies.

Local authorities must also publicise policies of land clearance, compensation and resettlement adequately and accurately, he said.

The Long Thanh District People’s Committee recently also urged residents not to buy, sell or transfer land in areas where ownership certificates have not been granted, especially in Long Phuoc, An Phuoc, Loc An and Binh Son communes.

The warning came after a “virtual” land price fever broke out in areas surrounding the airport.

It was reported that people bought agricultural land slots surrounding the planned area of Long Thanh Airport, then advertised the land for sale at high prices on the expectation that the land owners would benefit from the airport later.

Truong Minh Phuong, Director of Long Thanh District’s Department of Natural Resources and Environment, said many people recently bought or sold land in areas surrounding the airport project, but their contracts were handwritten and lacked official approval.

The district asked communes and towns to enhance supervision on construction and strictly punish violators.

The project’s total investment is estimated at VND336.63 trillion. It will have an annual capacity of 100 million passengers and five million tonnes of cargo. In June this year, the NA agreed to separate the land clearance, compensation and resettlement into a component project. — VNS

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