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Bridge ‘catalyst for Mekong', PM

Update: September, 10/2013 - 16:45
Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung (third, left) attends the grounding ceremony of the $271-million Vam Cong Bridge in the Mekong Delta Province of Dong Thap yesterday. — VNA/VNS Photo Duc Tam
DONG THAP (Biz Hub) – Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung on Tuesday hailed efforts taken by all stakeholders to build the 2.9km cable-stayed Vam Cong Bridge across the Hau River, saying it would catalyze socio-economic development in the Mekong Delta.

Flagging off construction of the US$271-million bridge, he praised the Ministry of Transport, local governments, Vietnamese and Korean enterprises as well as local residents for their contributions.

The bridge will be built by the GS Engineering & Construction and the Hanshin Engineering & Construction companies. GS E&C will be responsible for 80 per cent of the project. Construction will be completed in 48 months.

Dung directed the Ministry of Transport to closely supervise enterprises and contractors and guide them on complying with labour safety regulations. He said they should also work to ensure construction of the bridge is completed as scheduled.

He also asked relevant ministries, sectors as well as authorities in Dong Thap Province and Can Tho City to closely coordinate with Ministry of Transport in clearing land and maintaining security for the project.

At the groundbreaking ceremony, the Prime Minister suggested that authorities in Mekong Delta region mobilise resources for developing its infrastructure and transport system.

He said that alongside major projects like the HCM City – Trung Luong Freeway, Can Tho Bridge, Rach Mieu Bridge, Nam Song Hau and Quan Lo – Phung Hiep Routes, construction of the Vam Cong Bridge will create favourable conditions for enhancing trade between the Delta and southern economic hubs.

This will boost economic development of the Delta in particular and the country in general, he added.

Vam Cong Bridge is the second one after the Can Tho Bridge to cross the Hau River, connecting Lap Vo District in Dong Thap Province with Thot Not District in Can Tho.

The bridge is an important part of a major Mekong Delta infrastructure project that has five sub-projects including the Cao Lanh Bridge, a road linking Cao Lanh and Vam Cong bridges, a road skirting Long Xuyen City and the My An – Cao Lanh Road.

The Vam Cong Bridge stands upriver northwest from the Can Tho Bridge, which was built in 2010 by Japanese companies with funds from the Japan International Cooperation Agency and the Japan Bank of International Cooperation.

The new cable-stayed bridge will be funded by the Economic Development Co-operation Fund of Korea EximBank.

Its main towers with H-shaped columns will make the bridge a local landmark, experts have said.

The six-lane bridge, which will allow for a maximum speed of 80 kilometers per hour, will open to traffic by September 2017, according to Ministry of Transport.

The Mekong Delta is divided by the Tien and Hau Rivers.

Although the My Thuan Bridge over the Tien River and Can Tho Bridge over the Hau River have facilitated local transportation, the central area of the region still needs the Vam Cong and Cao Lanh ferries.

Construction of the Cao Lanh Bridge is expected to break ground soon. The six-lane bridge will be more than 1.3km long and 24.5m wide.

Upon completion, the two bridges will help shorten travelling time from HCM City to An Giang's Long Xuyen City to 2.5 hours from 3.5 hours. — VNS

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