Vietnam seeks $1 bln ADB loan for HCMC metro line

By Gia Minh   August 26, 2020 | 03:04 am PT
Vietnam seeks $1 bln ADB loan for HCMC metro line
Workers demolish houses to make way for the Ben Thanh - Tham Luong Metro Line in Ho Chi Minh City, August 23, 2020. Photo by VnExpress/Huu Khoa.
The Vietnamese government has requested the Asian Development Bank (ADB) for a $1 billion loan to build the second metro line in HCMC.

This loan application replaces the one for $390-million from the same bank that Vietnam canceled earlier this month for the Ben Thanh – Tham Luong metro route, or Metro Line 2, according to the Ho Chi Minh City Management Authority for Urban Railways (MAUR).

The cancelation had been planned since last year when HCMC authorities approved an 84 percent increase in the project costs to VND47.9 trillion ($2 billion), MAUR said.

Vietnam has also canceled a plan to borrow from $195 million from the European Investment Bank for the project. Apart from $1 billion from the ADB, it will tap German state-owned lender KfW for a $313 million loan.

The Finance Ministry said in a statement that HCMC has a loan cap of VND40 trillion in the 2021-2025 period, and therefore it should consider which project should be prioritized so not to exceed this cap.

The Ben Thanh – Tham Luong line, which was approved 10 years ago, will run 11 kilometers from District 1 to District 12, 9.2 km of it underground, and have 10 stations.

Construction of the southern metropolis’s second metro line is planned to take place between 2021 and 2026.

The route is expected to serve 140,000 passengers a day on average.

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