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Natural Disasters Cause Southern Vietnam $13.6m in Damage in First 9 Months

Vietnam Disaster Management Authority recently revealed worrying statistics on natural disaster damage in the southern part of the country.

In the first nine months of 2019, in the Mekong Delta and southeastern region of Vietnam, natural disasters killed 16 people, injured 54 more, severely damaged 2,210 houses and flooded another 17,713 homes. About 21,355 hectares of rice and 1,342 hectares of fruit trees were damaged; 117,675 fowls were killed and 80 fishing boats were wrecked. The estimated cost of this damage is over VND315 billion (US$13.6 million), Sai Gon Giai Phong reports.

The disaster management authority said that these natural disasters have hit 13 provinces in the Mekong Delta region, which experienced 512 landslides, 59 of which were especially dangerous. The region also suffers from erosion at 52 locations, of which 43 are considered dangerous. The total length of these landslides and erosion spots are 566 kilometers and 103 kilometers, respectively. In the southeastern region, natural disasters have also hit six provinces.

In response to these alarming figures, the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development has sent three delegations to Ca Mau, Ben Tre and Kien Giang provinces to assist the local administration in anti-landslide operationss. The ministry also sent an urgent request to the prime minister for VND1.7 trillion in aid to deal with landslides. In the meantime, a request for another VND1.3 trillion financial assistance package is awaiting the National Assembly Standing Committee's approval.

The Ministry of Planning and Investment has also requested the prime minister to send VND419 billion to four urgent anti-erosion projects in An Giang, Kien Giang, Ca Mau and Can Tho.

Last month, Ca Mau Province requested urgent financial assistance for dealing with erosion that washes away 20 meters of land per month in some areas. Early in October, historic high tides that hadn't been seen in three decades inundated large swathes of southern provinces, with Can Tho receiving some of the worst flooding.

[Photo by T. Cong via Tuoi Tre]