Travel firm illegally fills up Vietnam central bay for wharf

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A national attraction on Vietnam's central coast, Nha Trang Bay, is being filled up illegally for an international cruiser wharf.


Bulldozers, roller trucks and many people have been seen working near the bay on Tuesday morning, Tuoi Tre reported. They already have built a dyke hundreds of meters long inside the bay area.


Nguyen Duc Huy, who manages the vehicles at the site, said the construction is being funded by a local travel agency named Trong Diem, or Focus.


Huy said the work has been done in around 20 days and is expected to fill up an area of the bay to the level of a nearby road in six months.


The Construction Department of Khanh Hoa Province that includes the attraction, said it granted an investment permit to the travel firm in late October 2011, approving a project of nearly 90 hectares including 2.1 hectares for filling the bay.


But the department has not granted a construction permit to the project because the company was yet to submit a report about possible environmental impacts resulting from the project.


Mai Van Thang, deputy head of Khanh Hoa Department of Natural Resources and Environment, said Nha Trang bay has been ranked a national attraction.


Thus a report on impacts to the bay would be assessed by environmental officials from the central government instead of the province, Thang said.


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