3:56:20 PM | 17/4/2009
Being the centre of economy, politics and culture of the province, the image of Ben Tre town is blossoming. In the past time, besides developing industry and commerce, the local authority also concentrated on the development of the environment and social welfare.
Development in all areas
According to statistics, the annual economic growth of the town is quite high, i.e. 15.41 percent in 2006, 15.95 percent in 2007 and 16.17 percent in 2008. The commerce and service sector which is considered the cutting-edge sector of the town also witnesses a growth of 18-20 percent per annum. Commerce and service sector makes up over 58 percent of the province’s GDP while construction and industry sector approximately accounts for 38 percent.
Together with the above achievements, urban construction is among the tasks which get focused on by Ben Tre town. This task has started since 2003 and has become a target of the town to turn Ben Tre town into a city of third grade.
Environmental issues are especially important to Ben Tre town. In 2005, Ben Tre implemented the pilot model of socialization of the residential area in district 3. This model showed good results soon and was quickly implemented in other districts. Up to now, eight districts have conducted the similar task. Rubbish collection reaches 100 percent of the target set. Over 95 percent of households in those districts have participated in collecting rubbish. Annually, there are between seven and ten billion dong mobilized from the town’s budget and the people to get constructional works done, the drainage system dredged and other polluted areas cleaned.
Social policies are paid special attention to. There are lots of suitable solutions. Currently, Ben Tre town has completed the construction of houses of gratitude for poor people and people being entitled to the policy. The rate of poor households has decreased. As of the end of 2006, the rate was 3.22 percent and dropped to 1.86 percent in 2008.
The socio-economic condition of the town has improved along with the living standards of the residents. Proper investment in infrastructural construction has helped accelerate the construction pace of Ben Tre town, turning it into a city of third grade. Under the resolution of the provincial committee of the Party and resolution of Ben Tre town’s Congress of Party Committee’s Representatives, 9th session, 2005-2010 term, the target set is to get Ben Tre town recognized as a city of third grade in 2010. However, with high determination and support from all sectors and levels, the town was recognized as a city of third grade in August 2007 by the Ministry of Construction, two years earlier than the schedule. With current conditions, it can be said that Ben Tre town has satisfied conditions to become a city directly under the provincial government.
According to Mr Nguyen Tan Dat, Chairman of Ben Tre town’s People’s Committee, the major driving force for changes and socio-economic development of the town lies in the fact that, “in 2002, Ben Tre provincial committee of the Party promulgated Resolution No. 07-NQ/TU on accelerating urban development of Ben Tre town in 2002-2005 period with vision until 2010. Resolution No. 07 set targets to focus on accelerating the economic growth and development pace, and investment for construction of infrastructure system, etc. After being issued, the resolution was implemented comprehensively by all levels and sectors. It also received support from the people. As a result, positive changes were created by the end of 2005.”
Striving to become a city directly under provincial government
One of Ben Tre town’s important objectives is to turn the town into a city directly under the provincial government soon. To this end, Ben Tre town is trying to improve urban criteria so that once recognized, such criteria are firm and long-term.
Ben Tre town currently continues to mobilize its whole party committee and people to actively participate in the movement to construct the town into a city directly under the provincial government. Especially, its people’s council has selected 2009 as the year to launch the movement of constructing “a green, clean, beautiful and friendly city” and to implement the policy “good solidarity, good environment, good living style and good security.” If these movements bring good results, Ben Tre town might not be a city with only good socio-economic development, it can also be a gentle and hospitable city, being an ideal destination for domestic and foreign tourists.