HCMC, Southern key economic zone prioritizing construction of Ring Road No.3

During the 2nd week of the 3rd session, the National Assembly is going to discuss investments into Ring Road No.3 in Ho Chi Minh City, a major construction project not only to the city but also to the Southern key economic zone. SGGP News has conducted an interview with Chairwoman of HCMC People’s Council Nguyen Thi Le about this matter.

Chairwoman of HCMC People’s Council Nguyen Thi Le is answering SGGP Newspaper’s interview about investment in HCMC Ring Road No.3 construction project. (Photo: SGGP)

Chairwoman Nguyen Thi Le particularly stressed the critical role of this Ring Road No.3 to the socio-economic growth of HCMC and the Southern key economic zone:

_Firstly, HCMC is one economic center of Vietnam and is usually considered the leader of the Southern key economic zone. However, due to limited traffic facilities, it has encountered frequent congestions. That leads to unacceptably high logistics cost. Therefore, investments in Ring Road No.3 in HCMC will tremendously improve the goods flow here, and hence the competitiveness of the Southern region in general.

_Secondly, as an inter-regional route, Ring Road No.3 when operating synchronously will contribute to increase the connectivity inside HCMC and with neighboring provinces, resulting in more motivation for socio-economic growth.

_Thirdly, this route will promote urban, industrial, commercial developments of related localities in the future. More importantly, it will also ensure a strong defence line of HCMC and neighboring regions, while boosting the growth of suburban districts of Cu Chi, Hoc Mon, and Binh Chanh.

_In addition, when in operation, Ring Road No.3 is expected reduce traffic load for the inner city. At present, HCMC – Trung Luong Expressway and HCMC – Long Thanh – Dau Giay Expressway as well as radial ways to the city are all overloaded, especially at rush hours. The high capacity and safety of Ring Road No.3 are forecast to reduce this traffic pressure. Also, along with the completion of Ben Luc – Long Thanh Expressway in 2023, this Road will help to effectively separate and direct inter-provincial routes that pass by HCMC.

_Finally, Ring Road No.3 will aid in pollution prevention and control since heavy trucks will no longer enter the city, whose population is so dense. The Road can significantly reduce journey time, logistics cost as well.

As to nearly 4,000 households being affected and in need of relocation by this construction project, including 741 families in HCMC, the Chairwoman shared that to endure the progress of the project, HCMC and related localities have divide the project into 8 stages, with clear separation between land clearance and road building according to the administrative boundaries. This means each locality will be responsible for two sub-projects of site clearance and construction, to be carried out synchronously to the general project schedule.

All localities have finished suitable solutions for household relocation in accordance with the law to ensure citizen rights. HCMC guarantees that the life of relocated people will be the same or better than before, as stated in Resolution No.03/NQ-HDND, issued by HCMC People’s Council on April 7, 2022.

The construction project of Ring Road No.3 will use public investment, where the central budget and local one will be allocated proportionally. When asked about plans for the local capital for this important project, Chairwoman Le said that HCMC is reviewing its medium-term public investment for the period of 2021-2025 and the estimated capital mobilized from the city’s revenue increase. If necessary, the city will request the Government’s approval of local government bond issuance to have sufficient money for the project.

HCMC has already asked the Government and the National Assembly for permission to collect toll when the Road is in operation to return capital for the central and city budgets correspondingly to the invested proportions. When approved, HCMC and related provinces will cooperate with the Transport Ministry, the Finance Ministry, and other agencies to devise a detailed toll collection plan.

Chairwoman of HCMC People’s Council Nguyen Thi Le

Chairwoman Le informed that due to the importance of this construction project, HCMC has proposed that the Government greenlight specific mechanisms, policies for project investment such as allowing the adjustment of the medium-term public investment plan for the 2021-2025 period, already sent by the Transport Ministry to all localities for implementation, and the rise of the total medium-term capital in this plan, taken from the estimated revenue increase of each locality.

To ensure the synchronism of the whole project, HCMC People’s Committee is suggested to become the leader in project implementation. Any project adjustment when the National Assembly not in session will be submitted to the Standing Committee of the National Assembly for final decision.

HCMC also proposed to apply the contractor appointment mechanism. During the project, the contractor does not need to ask for permission to exploit minerals as common building materials. The contractor is in charge of carrying out environment impact assessments. Its mineral exploitation and use will be under supervision and management, while having to obey all tax payment duties, environment protection and restoration according to the current laws.

Discussing the role of HCMC People’s Council during this project to ensure the progress, the Chairwoman shared that the Council has just introduced Resolution No.03/NQ-HDND, issued on April 7, 2022 about the implementation of HCMC Ring Road No.3 construction project, and Resolution No.02/NQ-HDND, issued on April 7, 2022 about transforming land use purpose from forest to other uses for the construction of HCMC Ring Road No.3.

When the National Assembly approves the mentioned proposals from HCMC, HCMC People’s Council will increase its supervision on project implementation, timely address any possible problems arisen, organize necessary meetings to discuss and issue corresponding resolutions about local capital budget allocation within its power so that the project can complete as soon as possible to boost general socio-economic growth.

On the next working day, the National Assembly will consider investments in five  key traffic projects, namely Hanoi Ring Road No.4, HCMC Ring Road No.3, Chau Doc – Can Tho – Soc Trang Expressway (first phase), Khanh Hoa – Buon Ma Thuot Expressway (first phase), and Bien Hoa – Vung Tau Expressway (first phase).