Vietnam metro lifts ban on advertising in buses

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A bus on the Ho Chi Minh City - Dong Nai Province route carries an advertisement for an instant coffee product. HCMC is set to lift a ban on such advertising from 2015.

Ho Chi Minh City will allow advertising on public buses, a move that is expected to fetch nearly US$5 million a year, reducing its transport subsidy bill.

The Department of Transport will draft the regulations for this, and it is likely to be allowed from 2015 onwards.

In 2012 the city's public transport subsidy rose by 10 percent to VND1.4 trillion, and the figure is forecast to reach VND1.55 trillion this year.

Saigon Times online newspaper quoted Le Hai Phong, director of the Public Transport Management Center, as saying the city could earn $4.78 million a year by allowing billboards on its fleet of more than 3,000 buses.

The city plans to increase the number of buses to 3,500 by 2020 to serve 16 percent of demand, up from 10 percent now.


HCMC losing millions by banning billboards on buses
Critics have been consistently complaining that HCMC is losing revenue by being the only city in Vietnam to ban billboards on buses. 

But authorities maintained it would mar the city's looks and distract drivers of other vehicles.

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