Investment plan for HCMC–Long Thanh–Dau Giay Expressway expansion impractical

The Transport Ministry yesterday announced its opinion on the proposal to expand HCMC – Long Thanh – Dau Giay Expressway by Vietnam Expressway Corporation (VEC), including a request to clarify the scale and investment plan for this project.

VEC was approved to invest in the road expansion project for nearly 22km of HCMC – Long Thanh – Dau Giay Expressway, from the intersection with Ring Road No.2 in HCMC to the intersection with Bien Hoa – Vung Tau Expressway. However, the plan to widen this section from 4 to 8 lanes is not consistent with the Road Network Planning in the 2021-2030 Period with a Vision to 2050, approved by the Prime Minister for this section to have 10 lanes.

In addition, as to Long Thanh Bridge, the Transport Ministry asked that VEC consider building a new bridge. It should have a 5-lane lower entrance ramp and a 4-lane upper entrance ramp, a 5-lane main bridge, with suitable traffic regulation.

Regarding the investment methods, VEC’s proposal of using 44.4 percent (VND6,164 billion – US$260 million) from the state budget is not feasible as the Transport Ministry has no more capital for medium-term investment in the 2021-2025 period to allocate to this project.

As a result, it is suggested that VEC consider the benefits and drawbacks of other investment measures: public investment, public-private partnership, franchising before submitting a report to the Prime Minister.