Vietnam eyes $13.7 billion port upgrade to boost trade

By Doan Loan   October 2, 2021 | 06:00 pm PT
Vietnam eyes $13.7 billion port upgrade to boost trade
A ship is seen at Cai Mep Terminal in the southern province of Ba Ria-Vung Tau. Photo by VnExpress/Dang Khoa
Vietnam needs VND313 trillion ($13.77 billion) by 2030 to upgrade and optimize its port system to reduce dependency on road transportation and boost trade.

There will be two special graded terminals: Nam Do Son in the northern city of Hai Phong and Cai Mep in the southern province of Ba Ria-Vung Tau, according to a government plan for the 2021-2030 period with a vision until 2050.

These terminals will act as international hubs for Vietnamese goods to be transported directly to Europe and the U.S. (the two biggest export markets) so businesses no longer need to send their goods to intermediate hubs in other countries.

The remaining 34 ports will be divided into three categories: tier 1, 2 and 3, depending on their capacity and location.

Special graded and tier 1 ports will be connected with smaller ports by newly prioritized railways and roads.

The smallest ports located deep inland will be removed.

Deputy Minister of Transport Nguyen Xuan Sang said the new plan will focus on developing a shipping route between localities instead of relying on roads.

For example, Chinese imports could be shipped to Quang Ninh ports in the north and then to other localities along the coast, instead of being transported via road as in the current case.

"Our country has a long coastline, why do we need to use roads while we can use sea routes?" he said, adding that on average shipping costs are lower than road delivery.

The use of ports would also lower logistics costs and reduce pressure on roads, which would increase transport safety.

The majority, around 95 percent, of funding for this plan will come from private companies and other legal sources, according to the transport ministry.

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