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Japanese ODA sought to expand HCMC - Dong Nai expressway

By Gia Minh   October 4, 2021 | 04:57 pm PT
Japanese ODA sought to expand HCMC - Dong Nai expressway
The HCMC - Long Thanh - Dau Giay Expressway seen from above, April, 2021. Photo by VnExpress/Gia Minh
It might cost over $572 million to enlarge an expressway connecting HCMC and Dong Nai Province, of which $446 million would be drawn from ODA.

The proposal was put forward by My Thuan Project Management Board, which is authorized by the Ministry of Transport to expand part of the HCMC - Long Thanh - Dau Giay Expressway, which runs 55 kilometers (34 miles) to connect Ho Chi Minh City and its neighbor Dong Nai.

The expansion should cost VND13 trillion (more than $572 million) and 79 percent of the sum should come from official development assistance (ODA) provided by Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA), the board wrote to the ministry recently.

As proposed, the ODA loan would cover the costs for construction, equipment, technical design consultancy, supervision and contingency.

The rest of the project investment, around $120 million, would come from the government's counterpart capital, to cover value-added tax related to construction and contingency costs, site clearance, and project management, among other items.

As planned, the expanded section of the expressway will run 24 kilometers from An Phu Intersection in HCMC’s Thu Duc City to Bien Hoa - Vung Tau Expressway in Long Thanh District of Dong Nai, covering 11.7 kilometers in HCMC and around 12 kilometers in Dong Nai.

The project will expand the section from four to eight lanes for vehicles to travel at 100-120 kph.

For the two bridges on the section, Song Tac and Long Thanh, the board proposes enlarging them respectively to 10 and nine lanes.

The rest of the expressway in Dong Nai, running 31 kilometers from Long Thanh District to Dau Giay Town of Thong Nhat District, will be kept unchanged with four lanes.

As explained by My Thuan Project Management Board, JICA is now very interested in funding the expressway expansion.

Previously, the agency had worked with the board and directly inspected the route.

For now, the board proposes the Ministry of Transport to consider its proposal and send a document to the Ministries of Planning-Investment and Finance on the plan and report to Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh later.

Opened to traffic in 2015, the VND20.6-trillion HCMC - Long Thanh - Dau Giay Expressway is a blood line between HCMC and the rest of the southeast region, as well as the Central Highlands.

Given its crucial role, the route has repeatedly suffered heavy gridlock in recent years.

The expansion project is expected to only improve the expressway's capacity but meet future traffic demand as Dong Nai's Long Thanh International Airport, shaped to be the biggest in Vietnam, enters operation in 2025.

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