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WB to support infrastructure improvements in Thai Nguyen

Released at: 10:51, 25/06/2018

WB to support infrastructure improvements in Thai Nguyen

Photo: Duc Thanh

$80-million credit to help northern city upgrade key urban infrastructure.

by Nghi Do

The World Bank’s Board of Executive Directors have approved an International Development Association (IDA) credit of $80 million to improve the quality of key urban infrastructure, including transport connectivity, drainage and sewer systems, public spaces, and preschools, in Thai Nguyen city in the northern province of the same name.

Total project costs are estimated at $100 million, of which $80 million will be financed by the IDA’s Transitional Support Window and $20 million will be counterpart funding from the provincial government.

The funding will also support improvements to the city’s urban planning and management, including climate change and disaster risk considerations.

The Dynamic City Integrated Development Project will directly benefit more than 81,000 residents of Thai Nguyen city by reducing travel time through improved transport connectivity and enhancing urban environmental sanitation through improved drainage and sewer systems, particularly in flood-prone areas. The project will also improve childcare services through new and rehabilitated kindergartens and quality of life though improved public spaces. The project will also help improve the capacity of local authorities by providing technical assistance for integrated strategic urban planning, public transport planning, and sustainable asset management.

“As one of the key centers and economic engines of the northern mountainous region, Thai Nguyen city is undergoing rapid urbanization and thus urgently needs improved urban infrastructure services,” said World Bank Country Director in Vietnam, Mr. Ousmane Dione. “The proposed project is expected to not only support the city in improving basic infrastructure but also help it develop a comprehensive and integrated urban plan that links physical development with overall improvements to socioeconomic conditions. The successful implementation of this project may be replicated in other medium-sized cities in support of the government’s urban development agenda.”

The Vietnam National Urban Development Master Plan envisages the development of secondary cities as hubs to drive development within larger urban areas and provinces. This is consistent with international experience, where there is growing recognition of the role of secondary cities as catalysts for economic activity and development.

Thai Nguyen is one of the cities the Vietnamese Government proposed be supported based on economic growth potential. The project is consistent with the World Bank’s Country Partnership Framework, as it will contribute to strengthening urban planning and management, support resilient urban infrastructure investments, and improve disaster risk management.

* The World Bank’s International Development Association (IDA), established in 1960, helps the world’s poorest countries by providing grants and low- to zero-interest loans for projects and programs that boost economic growth, reduce poverty, and improve poor people’s lives. The IDA is one of the largest sources of assistance for the world’s 75 poorest countries. Resources from IDA bring positive change to the 1.5 billion people who live in IDA countries. Since 1960, it has supported development work in 113 countries. Annual commitments have averaged about $18 billion over the last three years.

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