Metro projects in Ho Chi Minh City behind schedule

Apart from Metro Line 1 (Ben Thanh - Suoi Tien) and Metro Line 2 (Ben Thanh - Tham Luong) in Ho Chi Minh City, the implementation progress of the remaining lines is very slow due to mechanism and procedural obstacles.

Apart from ongoing Metro Line 1 (Ben Thanh - Suoi Tien) and Metro Line 2 (Ben Thanh - Tham Luong), the implementation progress of the remaining lines in HCMC is behind schedule. (Photo: Quoc Hung)

After reviewing and evaluating implementation progress of metro lines in the city, Deputy Head of the Urban Railway Management Board (MAUR) of Ho Chi Minh City Bui Quoc Hien provided the above-mentioned information on April 4 afternoon after the review.

Particularly, as for the first phase of Metro Line 5 construction and investment project (Bay Hien intersection - Saigon Bridge), the construction bidding process to select a contractor serving for inspection services depends on the implementation progress of the Ministry of Planning and Investment. That leads to slow implementation.

Accordingly, the first phase of the project spans approximately 9 kilometers from Bay Hien Intersection to Saigon Bridge, including 7.46-kilometer long underground section and 1.43-kilometer long flyover section, with eight underground stations, one elevated station and a mini depot at Hoang Van Thu Park.

Funding for this project comes from the Government of Spain (ODA), Asian Development Bank (ADB), European Investment Bank (EIB) and German Reconstruction Bank (KfW). This project has a total investment of over VND40 trillion (US$1,723 billion).

The Metro Line 3a project for the first phase (Ben Thanh - High-Tech Medical Zone) spans 11 kilometers in length with 11 underground stations and a total investment of approximately VND48 trillion (US$1.9 billion).

The Ministry of Finance has not yet come a consensus on the mechanisms, debt repayment plans and commitment for responsibilities of selecting Special Terms for Economic Partnership (STEP) loans (Japanese ODA-constrained loans).

Regarding the Metro Line 2 project for the second phase (Ben Thanh - Thu Thiem and a section of Tham Luong - Tay Ninh Bus Station), the Ben Thanh - Thu Thiem section is 5.8 kilometers long running from the central Ben Thanh area to the new urban area of Thu Thiem with six underground stations.

This project has a total investment of approximately US$1.3 billion which is expected to use Korean ODA funds from the Economic Development Cooperation Fund (EDCF) and Economic Development Promotion Fund (EDPF) for some potential projects, however it is currently facing procedural obstacles.

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