Vietnam floods kill 12, capital Hanoi under water

People make their way through a flooded street in downtown Hanoi

People make their way through a flooded street in downtown Hanoi

HANOI (AFP) — Floods have killed at least 12 people in central Vietnam, emergency services said Friday, as heavy rains lashed the capital Hanoi and left many streets under one metre (three feet) of water.

Worst-hit central Ha Tinh province — where muddy waters inundated dozens of homes and hundreds of hectares of rice and other crops — reported seven deaths, said the National Flood and Storm Prevention Committee.

“A 48-year-old man was swept away after feeding his buffalo and a 19-year-old man was killed on the way to husk rice,” said the committee’s online report, adding that three of the victims were children.

More deaths were reported from Nghe An, Quang Ngai and Quang Nam provinces.

A week of heavy rains has swollen rivers and triggered flash floods and landslides in the region, where downpours continued Friday.

In northern Vietnam, the capital Hanoi was also hit by heavy rains that turned streets into rivers and caused traffic chaos, leaving many people stranded as flood waters soaked their motorcycle engines.

Vietnam gets lashed by typhoons, tropical storms and heavy rains every year. According to government figures, floods and landslides in Vietnam last year left 435 people dead and missing.

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World Bank lends Vietnam 60 mln dlrs to modernise central bank

A Vietnamese flag flutters next to giant advertisement billboard for ATM cards, in Hanoi

A Vietnamese flag flutters next to giant advertisement billboard for ATM cards, in Hanoi

HANOI (AFP) — The World Bank Friday said it was lending communist Vietnam 60 million dollars for a project to modernise its central bank with better training and technology.

The credit would help the State Bank of Vietnam and other institutions “to reform and modernise the financial sector by improving delivery of their main functions in line with international standards,” said the bank.

Much of the loan would be used “to build a modern, centralised information and communications technology platform to support the State Bank of Vietnam’s evolving role as a central bank,” the World Bank said in a statement.

The project would also help the Credit Information Centre and the Deposit Insurance of Vietnam with funding from the International Development Association, the Washington-based World Bank’s concessional arm.

“The project is aimed at contributing to the achievement of the government’s strategic goal of a stable and sound financial sector in Vietnam,” said Xiaofeng Hua of the World Bank’s East Asia and Pacific region.

“This effort is critical in ensuring Vietnam’s sustainable economic growth and continued progress in poverty reduction, especially at a time of global financial turbulence.”

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