HCMC ring road to get funding priority: parliament chairman

By Hoai Thu   June 6, 2022 | 05:12 pm PT
HCMC ring road to get funding priority: parliament chairman
A section of Ring Road No.3 in Binh Duong Province bordering HCMC. Photo by VnExpress/Gia Minh
HCMC will be allocated funds soon to build and complete Ring Road No.3 connecting it with neighboring industrial hubs in 2025, says National Assembly Chairman Vuong Dinh Hue.

The "urgency" of the project has occasioned funding priority for it, Hue said at an NA meeting Monday.

The project will be allocated with enough capital for completion in 2025 so that it could become operational in 2026, he said.

Ring Road No.3 connects HCMC with neighboring provinces and industrial hubs.

Over 90 kilometers (56 miles) long, it will allow vehicles to travel to and from Binh Duong, Long An and Dong Nai without having to enter inner HCMC.

All stakeholder localities have agreed that completing the road is an urgent task for tackling chronic gridlock in several areas and creating a driving force for economic and social development in the Southern Key Economic Region, which comprises HCMC, the industrial hubs of Dong Nai and Binh Duong, and the provinces of Ba Ria-Vung Tau, Tay Ninh, Binh Phuoc, along with Mekong Delta provinces Long An and Tien Giang.

Ten years since the ring road project was approved, only 16 kilometers have been completed in Binh Duong. Most recently, a consultant was hired to oversee an 8.75-kilometer section through Dong Nai and HCMC after its investment capital was estimated at VND5.33 trillion, with the funds coming from Japan’s official development assistance and counterpart Vietnamese capital.

Originally, HCMC and the three provinces had proposed building the road under the build-operate-transfer (BOT) format.

Under the BOT scheme, investors would have to contribute more than VND15.4 trillion, or nearly 20 percent of the total investment for the project, and spend 29 years recovering the investment, a plan that appeared unattractive for private investors.

Even when investors were found, the project would have to pass through various procedures and be approved by the parliament, given the high costs of a BOT project.

Therefore, the four localities decided to complete the road as a public project using the budget allocated for socio-economic recovery and development in the post-Covid period. HCMC and the three provinces Binh Duong, Dong Nai and Long An were among the hardest hit by the pandemic’s latest wave last year.

As per the latest plan, the first phase of the road is estimated to cost VND75.77 trillion ($3.27 billion).

Of this sum, nearly VND40 trillion would be sourced from the central budget and the rest from the localities’ budgets. This would include VND24.38 trillion from HCMC's coffers to build a section of almost 48 kilometers running through the city.

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