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Ho Chi Minh City seeks $1.22bn aid for the poor from central budget

Ho Chi Minh City seeks $1.22bn aid for the poor from central budget

Wednesday, August 18, 2021, 16:36 GMT+7
Ho Chi Minh City seeks $1.22bn aid for the poor from central budget
The poor living in rental rooms in Ho Chi Minh City are in dire need of support to cover not only daily meals but also rentals. Photo: Vu Thuy / Tuoi Tre

The People’s Committee of Ho Chi Minh City is seeking financial aid of nearly VND28 trillion (US$1.22 billion) and 142,200 metric tons of rice from the state budget to support needy people adversely affected by the ongoing COVID-19 outbreak.

The aid is supposed to benefit 1,580,100 households with 4,749,330 people in the city, covering meals and room rentals during its current social distancing implementation according to the prime minister’s Directive No. 16, which will run until September 15.

According to the plan, each household will receive VND1.5 million ($66) a month for rentals and VND50,000 ($2.2) a day for meals, whereas each person will be granted 15 kilograms of rice.

The proposal was composed in the spirit of the prime minister’s direction on COVID-19 prevention and control, which requires local authorities to ensure that “no people are deprived of food, clothing, shelter, or medical support” and provide cash and food aid to help people feel secure and comply with regulations on pandemic prevention and control.

Since a new wave of infections rooted by the fast-spreading Delta variant hit Vietnam in late April, Ho Chi Minh City authorities have enforced social distancing measures at different levels in an effort to curb the virus spread.

The stringent measures, however, have greatly affected the operation of agencies, organizations, and businesses in the city, leaving negative impacts on its socio-economic development.

The city’s tax revenue has gradually decreased since May and is expected to fall short of the central estimate.

The lives of the working poor have also been troubled, with many internal migrants having to leave the city for their hometowns.

As of Wednesday morning, Vietnam had documented 293,301 COVID-19 cases, with 111,308 recoveries and 6,472 deaths, according to the Ministry of Health.

The country has detected 289,276 domestic transmissions in 62 out of 63 provinces and cities in this fourth bout, which started on April 27.

Ho Chi Minh City is on top of the caseload with 156,186 patients.

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