Golf course projects would be managed by business conditions instead of planning instruments as at present, according to a draft decree recently revealed by the Ministry of Planning and Investment (MPI) for public comment.
|Tam Dao golf course in Vinh Phuc province__Photo: Internet|
Worthy of note, the draft lists seven acts which are prohibited in golf course investment and business, including:
(i) Building golf courses without an investment policy decision or investment registration certificate or approved environmental impact assessment report;
(ii) Using golf course land for improper purposes;
(iii) Dealing in golf courses and related services while failing to meet relevant conditions as prescribed by law;
(iv) Abusing golf course business to organize illegal gambling activities;
(v) Obstructing or failing to abide by examination and inspection of competent state agencies;
(vi) Failing to provide information or to make reports when so requested by competent state agencies in accordance with law; and,
(vii) Committing other law-prescribed prohibitions.
The draft goes on to stipulate the use of land by golf course projects. Specifically, a golf hole may use at most 5 hectares of land while the area for building a whole new golf course must not exceed 270 hectares, equivalent to 54 holes.
Importantly, land reserved for construction of golf courses and auxiliary buildings must not be used for building houses for sale. Once golf course construction plans are approved, all proposals for change of land use purpose for commercial housing development would be rejected. Golf course project investors would be required to put their golf courses into operation within 36 months after obtaining land allocation or land lease decisions. In addition, they must commit to providing relocation support to and arrange employment for people whose land is recovered.
Under the draft decree, there are several types of land which must not be used for construction golf courses, including: land used for national defense and security under approved master plans and plans; land under natural forests; land for rice farming, except those producing poor yields, bringing about low economic efficiency and meeting conditions for change of land use purposes; and land planned for construction of industrial parks or clusters and urban centers. In addition, golf courses must be built in areas with great potential for tourism development, uncultivated coastal sandy land, barren hills and uncultivated land, along with others.
The draft also says that the competence to decide on investment policy on golf course projects would still be rested on the Prime Minister.
Le Quang Manh, Deputy Minister of the MPI said that the management of golf course projects by business conditions complies with principles of the market mechanism, maximizes the effectiveness and potential of golf course development, and prevents the inefficient use of land for building golf courses.- (VLLF)