HCMC speeds up smart city projects

The Commission of Economy and Budget (under Ho Chi Minh City People’s Council) yesterday held a meeting about the performance and progress of investment plans for smart city transformation sub-projects.

The meeting of the Commission of Economy and Budget. (Photo: SGGP)
The meeting of the Commission of Economy and Budget. (Photo: SGGP)

The HCMC Department of Information and Communications reported that it is now carrying out 4 sub-projects in the smart city transformation project. The first one, constructing an intelligent operation center for HCMC from 2019-2022, takes an estimated investment of VND969 billion (approx. US$41.7 million). The 2019-2025 project to establish a sole hotline center for receiving and handling emergency information has an estimated investment of VND993 billion ($42.8 million).

The other two projects to build a monitoring camera system and database storage and management system receive an estimated investment of VND600 billion ($25.9 million).

However, as said by Deputy Director of HCMC Department of Information and Communications Vo Thi Trung Trinh, these completely new sub-projects have encountered many obstacles.

The most challenging ones are a weak cooperation among related state units and industries in identifying the cope of IT implementation, and in voicing a feasible solution based on current laws; the confusing status of IT, postal tasks, and telecommunications in HCMC after these fields are managed by one state unit only; and unclear guidance documents of authorized state offices regarding management tasks for proper procedures and implementation conditions of public investment projects.

The main recommendation in the meeting was that the city should speed up the progress of sub-projects in the smart city transformation project so that the disbursement progress in 2020 is as planned.

In related news, yesterday, the Commission of Culture and Society (under HCMC People’s Council) also held a meeting to summarize the task of observing laws and policies about food safety in Hoc Mon Agriculture Wholesale Market.

Mr. Le Van Tien, Deputy Director of Hoc Mon Agriculture Wholesale Market Co Ltd., reported that after being chosen as a food safety piloting market, all management tasks for produce quality are more strictly carried out. Simultaneously, the market regularly examines input and output merchandise. As a result, in the past 9 months, it has fined 13 cases of selling unhygienic pork (a decrease of 40 percent compared to 2019).

The sad fact is many spontaneous produce traders appear around the market, creating unhealthy competitions with formal ones and negatively affecting the market’s prestige.

The Commission of Culture and Society paid a visit to certain markets in District 11 in the afternoon.

Head of the Management Board of Binh Thoi Market Nguyen Ba Tung shared that his organization often mobilize traders to frequently check their health to avoid contagious diseases at work.

District 11 Public Utilities Co Ltd. said that they regularly sanitize the market, especially in the section of meat and seafood. They also clean the market 2-3 times a month to ensure sanitation for raw meat and fresh vegetables sections.

Lastly, the Management Board has effectively handled spontaneous traders appearing around the market and reducing the area’s aesthetics.

Mr. Tung reported certain challenges in the management tasks for food safety like controlling the source of merchandise due to a lack of human resources or traders not wearing proper face masks and gloves. The People’s Committee of District 11 promised to tackle these problems right away via frequent checking and raising traders’ awareness.

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