|A part of the HCM City-Trung Luong Expressway. The toll collection rights for the expressway may be as high as $95 million. — VNA/VNS Photo Hoang Hai
HCM CITY (VNS) — HCM City-based Yen Khanh Service Trading Production Co Ltd put in a massive VND2 trillion (US$95 million) for the toll collection rights of one of the nation's flagship expressways.
According to the Ministry of Transport, payment for the City's Trung Luong Expressway will be made in three phases over six months in exchange for permission to collect toll fees at four major toll booths– at Cho Dem, Ben Luc, Tan An and Than Cuu Nghia from January 1 next year.
The Cuu Long Infrastructure Investment Development and Management Corporation (Cuu Long CIMP) was commissioned to sign the contract and transfer the toll booths to the company.
"The toll collection right will last just five years because it will be difficult for investors to mobilise capital to buy the right to a longer period of toll collection," Deputy Minister of Transport Nguyen Hong Truong told Thoi bao Kinh Te Sai Gon (Saigon Economic Times).
The bid follows an earlier purchase by the BIDV Expressway Development Company (BEDC) for more than VND 9.1 trillion ($433 million).
The BEDC agreement was initially intended for a 25-year period following the expressway's completion in 2010, but collapsed a year later due to capital problems.
The Cuu Long CIPM was assigned to collect the fees on behalf of the ministry from February last year, while also opening bids to investors.
Toll amounts reached VND380 billion ($18 million in the first year, of which, VND65 billion ($3 million) was spent on annual road maintenance.
The six-lane road, with a length of 62km, was built at a cost of nearly VND10 trillion ($476 million). The major highway connects HCM City to Tien Giang Province in the Mekong Delta and allows vehicles to travel at 120km per hour. — VNS