Government tells local authorities to return beaches to people
  • | VietNamNet | June 02, 2015 04:58 PM
The Prime Minister’s instruction not to license construction works in coastal areas has been applauded by experts and travel firms. Millions of people in coastal provinces are awaiting the revival of the beaches.

Dr. Nguyen Tri Hieu, a renowned economist, while saying that this was a reasonable decision, noted that it is necessary to re-program economic development in coastal areas with a focus on sea tourism and fisheries.

“If Vietnam is determined to develop tourism, it needs to be bold enough to re-organize the coastal areas towards the sustainable development instead of short-term benefits,” Hieu said.

“In order to do that, it is necessary to revoke licenses granted before to the resort and construction works in coastal areas, accepting to pay high for the move,” he said.

The Khanh Hoa provincial authorities have recently asked some investors to remove their construction works that block the view to Nha Trang Beach.

Khanh Hoa’s Chair Nguyen Chien Thang on May 27 confirmed that the local authorities have told Bon Mua Nha Trang Company, the developer of E-land Four Seasons, a service complex, to demolish the construction work because it does not fit the landscapes in the coastal area.

Meanwhile, Ana Mandara Resort has also been told to relocate by 2018.

The provincial authorities, which were determined to develop Phuong Hoang beach (Phoenix) in Nha Trang City, have recently stopped the project amid strong protest from the public.

Prior to that, Dewan, the project developer from India, prohibited locals to enter the area reserved for the project. This angered people who felt their beautiful beaches had been stolen.

A report from the Ministry of Natural Resources and the Environment (MONRE) showed that 780 projects in coastal areas in seven localities, including Ba Ria-Vung Tau, Kien Giang, Khanh Hoa, Da Nang, Quang Nam, Ninh Thuan and Binh Thuan, have been licensed. 

If the local authorities want to revoke the licenses, they will have to pay high prices to compensate investors.

Hieu said that local authorities may hesitate to get the granted licenses back for fear the move would discourage investors. However, he emphasized that they must do this, and that Vietnam must not attract investments at any cost.

“Local authorities have been trying to separate the coastal areas into small land plots to sell to investors for money. Meanwhile, the beaches are the assets of all the Vietnamese people,” an analyst said.

Le Cong Sy, an architect, also said that the public interest must be the top priority when the government and local authorities consider investment and development projects.

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