The ministry has submitted to the government a draft plan on restricting personal vehicles, with a series of measures to be taken to reduce the circulation of public vehicles in big cities.

Under the plan, personal vehicles will only be allowed to enter the streets during certain hours in certain days, while measures to increase the use of public transportation means will be taken, such as reducing bus fares for passengers.

The plan proposes increasing the number of one-way streets for personal vehicles and building a separate lane for motorbikes in the streets leading to and leading out of big cities.

The ministry also suggests having incentive policies for businesses selling bicycles and bikers.

The ministry urges Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City to quickly take urgent measures to reduce personal vehicles, including the implementation of public transportation development projects.

It asks five centrally-governed cities – Da Nang, Hai Phong, Can Tho and the two aforesaid – to build their own plans to reduce personal vehicles and submit the plans to the government before April 1 next year.

According to the ministry, the numbers of personal vehicles in big cities have increased sharply over the last 10 years. Statistics last year showed HCMC had around 5.5 million personal vehicles, followed by Hanoi with 4.3 million.

Hai Phong, Da Nang and Can Tho had 826,000, 578,000 and 568,000, respectively.

The ministry blames the increasing numbers of personal vehicles combined with rapid urbanization and uncontrollable migration into big cities for traffic congestion in these cities.

It predicts that the number of personal cars will increase in big cities next year when the economy recovers.

By Mai Ha - Thanh Nien News - November 27, 2013