State auditors want penalties slapped on transport project operators for wrongdoing

By Anh Minh   May 22, 2020 | 12:07 pm GMT+7
State auditors want penalties slapped on transport project operators for wrongdoing
A section of the Trung Luong - My Thuan Expressway in the southern province of Tien Giang where construction is ongoing. Photo by VnExpress/Quynh Tran.

State auditors have recommended a reduction in the number of years toll can be collected by seven build-operate-transfer projects in which wrongdoing is suspected.

They are among nine where the State Audit Office of Vietnam discovered transgressions last year and recently reported to the National Assembly.

The Transport Ministry had approved these nine projects before the government had given in-policy approval. Besides, for most of them, contractors were appointed, not chosen through open bids, and none of them filed environmental impact reports.

Some of them have seen costs balloon by millions of dollars.

The Trung Luong – My Thuan Expressway, a key project to boost southern connectivity, has seen a cost overrun of VND62 billion ($2.6 million), while for a coastal road in the northern city of Hai Phong it was VND45.5 billion ($1.9 million).

The State Audit Office has recommended fines totaling VND925 billion ($39 million) for the operators of the nine projects.

For two of them, it also suggested reducing the toll period by 14-16 years, and for five others, by 7.5 years or fewer.

Auditors also found problems at 29 build-transfer projects last year, including construction delays, erroneous calculation of costs and ballooning land prices.

They recommended fines of VND5.2 trillion ($222 million).

 
 
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