Environmental pollution costs 5.5 pct of Vietnam's GDP: WB

Environmental pollution costs up to five percent of Vietnam's Gross Domestic Product (GDP) annually, according to latest figures released by the World Bank (WB).

Specifically, the country lost U.S..9 billion out of the total U.S.$ 71 billion of GDP in 2007, and U.S.$ 4.2 billion out of U.S.$ 76 dollars in 2008, said the bank.

The country also has to spend another U.S.$ 780 million each year on public health treatment caused by environmental pollution.

According to environment agencies of northern Phu Tho and Nam Dinh province, spending on respiratory treatment caused by air pollution reached some 295,000 Vietnamese dongs (VND) (U.S$ 14) per capita annually, while the number in capital Hanoi is 561,370 VND (U.S.$ 27).

Meanwhile, 80 percent of the country's dysentery and diarrhea cases are caused by polluted water. In the past four years, up to six million cases of dysentery and diarrhea are related to water pollution. Vietnam is among the top ten countries with the worst air quality in the world.