Unions demand better conditions for workers

VietNamNet Bridge – The minimum wage is too low for workers to survive on while social housing is inadequate and too expensive for them, trade unions told HCM City’s leaders at a meeting on Sunday. Housing projects for workers and relocated residents in District 2 of HCM City. — Photo: VNA/VNS  The more than 300 trade union leaders who were in attendance raised the issue of social housing for workers, lamenting that the number of houses is very low while their prices are high. “In the past when any construction or forestry unit was established, houses for workers and kindergartens for their children were built immediately.                   “But now industrial and processing zones attract tens of thousands of workers but there is no housing for them, and they have to rent ramshackle dormitories.” They demanded that local authorities should speed up construction of social housing for workers. Nguyen Van Danh, deputy director of the Department of Construction, said: “Now workers in industrial and processing zones need around 245,000 places to live, but the city has only 5,500 social houses and 39,500 guesthouses for them. “The city plans to build 20,000 social houses more at prices ranging from VND300 million to 1 billion ($13,500 - 44,000) and dormitories for another 35,000 workers by 2020.” The union leaders also urged city authorities to look into the food served to workers by their companies and ensure its quality by severely fining violators and to provide…... [read more]

Housing projects for workers and relocated residents in District 2 of HCM City. (Photo: VNA) HCM City (VNS/VNA) - The minimum wage is too low for workers to survive on while social housing is inadequate and too expensive for them, trade unions told Ho Chi Minh City’s leaders at a recent meeting. The more than 300 trade union leaders who were in attendance raised the issue of social housing for workers, lamenting that the number of houses is very low while their prices are high. According to them, in the past when any construction or forestry unit was established, houses for workers and kindergartens for their children were built immediately. But now industrial and processing zones attract tens of thousands of workers but there is no housing for them, and they have to rent ramshackle dormitories. They demanded that local authorities should speed up construction of social housing for workers. Nguyen Van Danh, deputy director of the Department of Construction, said: “Now workers in industrial and processing zones need around 245,000 places to live, but the city has only 5,500 social houses and 39,500 guesthouses for them.” “The city plans to build 20,000 social houses more at prices ranging from 300 million VND to 1 billion VND (13,500 - 44,000 USD) and dormitories for another 35,000 workers by 2020,” he added The union leaders also urged city authorities to look into the food served to workers by their companies and ensure its quality by severely fining…... [read more]

According to participants, basic salary of VND3,750,000 a month is low while prices of essential items escalate. Chairwoman of Nissei Electric Vietnam Tran Thi Hong Van said that the government need to raise monthly wage to guarantee laborers’ basic need of life. Agreeing with this opinion, chairman of Dae Yen Vietnam Tran Duy Bien said that to make ends meet, workers have to work overtime; accordingly many of them have no time for entertaining and studying. Another problem is that a few condos were built for laborers in industrial parks and export processing zones. Thousands of laborers in industrial parks and export processing zones are living in cramped houses. Therefore, city authority should build dormitories plus with preferential rent to help workers settle down in the city. Deputy Director of the Department of Construction Nguyen Van Danh said that as per the survey of accommodation, the city has built over 5,500 social houses and 39,00 accommodations for workers to meet 15 percent of demand. By 2020, the city will strive to have 20,000 social houses and 35,000 condos for laborers. In the meeting, food safety and retirement age were also mentioned. Chairwoman of the city’s Labor Union Tran Kim Yen said that the government has had many activities to take care of workers’ living condition materially and spiritually. For instance, in 2016, ten preschools were operational to receive workers’ children in industrial parks and export processing zones. Speaking at the meeting, Chairman of the municipal People’s Committee…... [read more]

The project will be funded by the Hanoi Department of Construction, with VND10 billion from a ODA loan and corresponding capital from Vietnam. Yen Xa is one of the plants which will be capable of processing 270 cubic metres per day. It will cover an area of 13 hectares in the villages of Trung, Thuong, and Chua Nhi in Thanh Liet commune, Thanh Tri district. The other is the Phu Do plant with an output of 84,000 cubic metres per day. It will be built on an area of 6 hectare in Me Tri commune, Tu Liem district. According to the Ministry of Construction, the project should be considered carefully before being built to meet social and technical standards. The total amount of household wastewater is estimated at about 700,000 cubic metres per day. There is also between 100,000 to 120,000 cubic metres of wastewater from the 26 industrial zones, 40 industrial parks and craft villages. At the moment, there are only 4 sewage plants in the capital to process only 50,000 cubic metres a day.... [read more]

35 years after Liberation Day, Buon Ma Thuot City in the Central Highland province of Dak Lak has made significant progress. The Party Politburo plans to develop the city into an economic, cultural and social center in the Central Highland region by 2020.Developing from scratch... After Liberation Day, Buon Ma Thuot was a very small town, devastated by the wars. Infrastructure had collapsed and the economic foundation left by the old regime was in tatters with people facing famine and epidemic diseases spreading fast. Nguyen Duc Dung, a resident in Tu An ward, Buon Ma Thuot City, recalls: “At the time, the town just had 21 streets. Its center had a diameter of around 1.5km with electricity and the remaining area was desolate. Almost from scratch, under the leadership of the Party, Buon Ma Thuot has achieved significant results in its construction and development process over the past 35years. In 2009 its economic growth rate reached over 20 percent. Per capita income is more than US$1,200, doubling the provincial average level and budget collection hit over VND710 billion. Together with socio-economic development, Buon Ma Thuot has developed urban beauty. Now the city has more than 260 concrete roads with lighting systems and nearly 12,000 trees along streets. Last year, it was selected as one of the country’s cleanest cities. ... into a first tier city The Prime Minister has decided to upgrade the city into one of the 12th regional city and the first tier one. This is good news…... [read more]

Accordingly, an inspection team with the involvement of the fire-fighting police, departments of Construction, Culture and Sports, Industry and Trade, and Electricity, and market management agencies will be formed, focusing on inspecting risk areas such as petrol stations, restaurants, entertainment centres, and construction sites. Quan underscored the need to thoroughly abide by standards and regulations on fire prevention and fighting, including those related to safe distance for extinguishing fire, measures for preventing fire-spread and emergency exit. The Chairman also urged the concerned agencies to strictly and effectively implemented directives of the municipal Party Committee and People’s Committee relating to fire prevention and fighting, and rescue work in the locality, while enhancing state management in the field. Communication activities should be fostered in the coming time to raise public awareness of the issue, Quan said. In 2014, nearly 250 fires were reported in HCM City, killing 19 people and injuring 12 others, and causing a total economic loss of about 50 billion VND (2.35 million USD).... [read more]

This has been confirmed after local authorities have summed up as many as 16 kinds of disputes between residents and apartment investors in recent years. As a result, the People’s Committee of Ho Chi Minh City will conduct a comprehensive inspection at all 1,244 apartment buildings in the city from now till June, said Do Phi Hung, vice director of the Department of Construction and head of the inspection program. This marks the first time the city is organizing such a check. Problems that cause concern The 16 disputes recognized by authorities include the misuse of common areas in apartments, the cost of management and operation of facilities, the cost of maintenance, safety for fire prevention, construction quality, the issuance of certificates of apartment ownership, public security, and sales contracts. The city will also have a chance to correct loopholes in laws and regulations concerning the construction and management of apartments for better enforcement in the future, Hung said. At the Bau Cat 2 apartment building in Tan Binh District, families living on the ground floor turn their private living space into cafeterias that run from the morning till midnight. They play loud music that constantly disturbs others living on upper floors. “Clients of the cafeterias and restaurants on the ground floor use the public restrooms of our apartments and we have to pay the cost of water and electricity for that,” said a resident named Thu. The trouble at the Nguyen Chi Thanh apartment tenement, located at 155 Nguyen…... [read more]

This was announced at a meeting on March 22 by the chairman of the Hanoi People's Committee, Nguyen The Thao. Several weeks ago, for so-called safety and beauty reasons, city authorities decided to fell the trees with decayed or curved trunks and branches and replace them with young saplings. The project aimed to fell and replace 6,700 trees on 190 streets. So far, about 500 trees have been felled, stirring up widespread protests. On March 20, the protests forced authorities to stop felling of trees after it provoked widespread media and public concern. Members of the public questioned the environmental impact of the removals and called for a public survey on the quality of the 6,700 trees. Thao said the inspection team would be led by the chief inspector of the operation, adding that it would include representatives from different agencies in the city, including police, the Department of Finance, the Department of Planning and Architecture and the Department of Science and Technology. The team must report its findings to the municipal People's Committee within a month, said Thao. Thao also told the Department of Construction to suspend several officials involved in the tree removal programme.... [read more]

Thao chaired a meeting on March 22 to hear reports on what has been done since the city authorities ordered a suspension of the plan on March 20 after some 500 trees had been chopped down, stirring up an uproar from the public. After the meeting, Thao asked Le Van Duc, director of the construction department, and his deputy who is in directly charge of the plan, Hoang Nam Son, to review their responsibilities related to the execution of the plan, which aims to fell 6,700 trees in urban areas and grow new plants in replacement from 2015 to 2017. In talking with Tuoi Tre (Youth) newspaper on March 22, Son said, “We will strictly review our responsibilities.” Son also added that such a review does not mean those who have been involved in the plan are confirmed to have made mistakes. Members of the public have directed fierce protests at the hasty implementation of the plan and the felling of many old and green trees, whereas Hanoi leaders had said they would only cut decaying trees and those at risk of falling over unexpectedly. Many people have stuck the appeal "Do Not Cut Me" on the trunks of myriad trees around the city, and set up a Facebook page, "6,700 People for 6,700 Trees,” which had attracted more than 49,200 "likes" as of March 22. Before formulating the plan, Hanoi authorities directed the Department of Construction and Hanoi Green Trees-Park Co. Ltd. to launch a survey in 2014. The…... [read more]

Deputy Nguyen Van Tuyet from northern Yen Bai province complained about the number of construction projects without licenses from authorised agencies. Minister Quan acknowledged that the number of licensed construction projects has increased considerably in recent times, citing Hanoi as an example. He said licensed construction projects in Hanoi increased to 67 percent in 2006 from 38 percent in the previous year. However, about 30 percent of the projects were unlicensed, said Mr Quan, adding that the construction sector has set a target of further reducing this figure in 2007. Deputy Nguyen Minh Thuyet from northern border Lang Son province asked Minister Quan to explain the ministry’s views on wrongly built projects in big cities and its solutions. Mr Quan said any construction projects must match the approved planning, and his ministry is putting final touches on urban planning schemes for submission to the Government. According to Mr Quan, owners of big buildings will be fined up to VND70 million if they violate articles included in the license. However, VND70 million is a small figure for them and many owners do not care about it. In addition, the Construction Law requires owners to restore the project to the planning specification and compensate any damages. The crux of the matter is that the building is not only the private property of that owner, but it violates the common architectural space. Therefore, demolition of the project needs close supervision by the concerned parties. Deputy Truong Chi Huu from southern Dong Nai province…... [read more]




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