Vietnam's Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung has approved the master plan to build the Ho Chi Minh (HCM) City Region by 2030 with a vision to 2050, local Vietnam News daily reported Monday.
Accordingly, the master plan will connect the country's largest city with key economic regions in the South Central Coast and in the context of climate change and rising sea levels.
The planning area includes HCM City and the regional provinces of Binh Duong, Binh Phuoc, Tay Ninh, Long An, Ba Ria -Vung Tau and Tien Giang, a total area of 30,404 square km that had a population of just over 18 million in 2013.
The plan will also develop rural areas that suit traditional culture and production conditions and establish hi-tech agriculture zones, urban agriculture zones and specialized agriculture zones.
In order to preserve natural landscapes and ecological features, national- and international-level tourism centers will be established.
Currently, HCM City is Vietnam's largest economic hub. In 2013, the city's GDP grew 9.3 percent, with GDP per capital reaching 4, 500 U.S. dollars, as compared with the country's 5.4 percent and 1,960 U.S. dollars, respectively.
As the end of 2010, HCM City's population reached nearly 7.4 million people, according to the Vietnam General Statistics Office.