Inspectors in the capital city have pointed out a series of violations committed by the municipal Department of Culture and Sports in managing large-sized outdoor advertising billboards, Tien Phong (Vanguard) newspaper reported.
|Hanoi’s violations in managing big-sized advertising billboards|
The inspectors concluded that due to a lack of advertising planning, the department’s process of granting advertising licenses is not in accordance with the Advertising Law.
Between 2012 and 2017, the department granted advertising licences to 817 applications.
Among 319 licenced applications inspected, 221 applications failed to show documents to prove the right of owning or using advertising billboards following the Advertising Law.
The storing of the advertising applications before 2016 was not paid due attention, causing difficulties for the inspectors to track the process of granting advertising licences.
The inspection shows loopholes in the punishment of violations by advertising companies.
The number of over-sized advertising panels increased from 67 in 2014 to 190 in the middle of 2016. The city’s Department of Culture and Sports imposed punishment on 182 panels.
The inspectors found out that not all violations were subjects to fines. Different levels of punishment were applied on similar violations. For example, companies which did not have construction licences for over-sized billboards were subjected to a fine of VNĐ4 million (US$174). Others companies were fined VNĐ35 million ($1,520) for similar violations.
“The inconsistency of punishments creates conditions for companies to commit violations,” said the inspectors.
After the punishment had been handed out, the department neither asked local authorities to dismantle the violating billboards nor reported the cases to the city’s People’s Committee for further solutions. The director of the Department of Culture and Sports must be held responsible for that, the inspectors said.
The department has delayed collecting cash for administrative punishments. So far only VNĐ961 million or 58 per cent of the money supposed to be collected had been paid. The remaining, VNĐ670 million, has not been collected for the State budget.
As many as 178 outdoor large-sized billboards out of 190 violating ones have been dismantled so far. Among 12 panels which have not been torn down, seven are located in the international terminal of Noi Bai Airport.
According to Tien Phong newspaper, the domestic and international terminals of the airport are currently surrounded by some one hundred outdoor advertising billboards of various sizes with the biggest one measuring up to 120 sq.m.
Local authorities of Soc Son District where the airport is located said that the booming of the advertising billboards is “out of control”.
According to Le Huu Manh, vice chairman of the district’s People’s Committee, the airport’s management board claims that the big-sized billboards follow planning of the transport ministry.
However, managing advertising panels are the responsibility of local authorities. The city’s authorities are determined to fine advertising boards erected at the airport, he said.
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