BÌNH DƯƠNG — Nguyễn Thị Huệ Lan wants to buy an affordable social house, but she has been unable to access the market.
Lan is from the southern province of Bình Phước but has lived and worked for many years in Thủ Dầu Một City, Bình Dương Province.
After saving for a long time, Lan is looking to buy a social house this month as her long-time residence. But she has found that many of them already have owners and new projects are not yet ready.
Hữu Phước, from Bến Tre Province though now in Bình Dương Province, said that he has recently moved into a new 30-sq.m social house, which he bought for VNĐ200 million (US$8,500).
In order to buy the house, Phước had to sign up a year ago. Workers cannot buy houses without waiting as the demand for social houses was very high. All social houses are sold right after being built.
Phước said that social houses used to be sold at VNĐ100 million ($4,200), which is suitable for low-income workers, but prices have risen since. The reason for house price increases is that construction materials have increased, pushing up social house prices and making it more difficult for low-income workers to access the market.
Bùi Minh Trí, the head of the Bình Dương Management Board of Industrial Zones, told Vietnam News Agency that the province had 28 industrial zones attracting more than 1.5 million workers, mainly from other provinces. Therefore, housing demand is very high.
The province has implemented many policies to build thousands of social houses at reasonable prices for employees, to create favourable conditions to live and work in the province.
Bình Dương Province has invested in 86 social house projects over nearly 200ha. However, this is not enough to meet demand.
Phạm Ngọc Thuận, general director of the Investment and Industrial Development Corporation (often called Becamex IDC) said that the province had completed 47,500 social houses for workers and low-income people. However, as demand is still very high, the project could not keep up with the people's needs.
At present, Becamex IDC is building 20,000 social houses in Thuận An City, Thủ Dầu Một City, Bến Cát Town and Bàu Bàng District with a total investment of about VNĐ9.5 trillion ($405.8 million). The first stage is scheduled to be completed at the beginning of next year.
The houses will be sold for between VNĐ120-500 million ($5,100-21,300) each, depending on area and type. Workers can also hire them out for VNĐ750,000 ($32) per house per month.
Bình Dương Province is striving to build one million social houses for workers in the period 2021-25, with a vision to 2030.
Director of the provincial Department of Construction Võ Hoàng Ngân said that the province plans to have one million social houses for workers to create better living conditions for them.
The lease and sale of social houses are managed based on regulations.
The department encouraged boarding house owners to upgrade their houses to the department's standards to raise workers' living conditions.
People borrowing money to build or repair boarding houses will receive preferential policies.
Chairman of the Bình Dương People's Committee Võ Văn Minh said that as the province developed industrial production, social housing for low-income people was very important and has received much consideration from the province.
The province encourages people to invest in building social houses to make stable residences for workers.
In the northern province of Thái Nguyên, where around 200,000 workers live in industrial zones, more than 60 per cent of workers come from other provinces, meaning the demand for social houses is always high.
Trịnh Việt Hùng, chairman of the Thái Nguyên People's Committee, said that the province now had 50 places approved to build social houses.
However, he said, it was difficult to implement the project because capital from the State budget was limited.
The province has called for investors to join the work of building social houses for workers.
On the other hand, the province will also have supportive policies for workers to buy social houses with preferential interest rates from banks.
It is scheduled that in August this year, the province will have started two social housing projects of more than 1,600 houses.
By the end of last year, Việt Nam completed 266 social house projects with more than 142,000 houses, with a total area of more than 7.1 million square metres. — VNS
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