HA NOI — Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung has told the Transport Ministry to improve transport planning over the next 10 years.
|Passengers queue to check in at Tan Son Nhat Airport, HCM City. Many airports and seaports in the country are either overloaded or operating at full capacity, due mainly to poor estimates of needs, experts have said. — VNA/VNS Photo Thanh Phan
Forecasts of goods to be transported through seaports and airports had been woefully inaccurate, experts said.
Minister of Transport Dinh La Thang said during an online discussion on the Government website in January that many of the 39 seaports and 22 airports in the country were overloaded or operating at full capacity.
Thang cited the example of Hai Phong Port that was designed to be able to accommodate 10 million passengers in 2010. In 2011, however, it had to deal with more than 40 million passengers, he said.
"This shows that planning is a problem," the minister said.
He said ports in HCM City, Vung Tau and Quang Ninh were also running at breaking point, while many airports – including Noi Bai, Tan Son Nhat and Da Nang – were also seriously overcrowded.
Meanwhile, Ngo Luc Tai, former director of HCM City Transport Department, said several seaports in the central region were being underused.
Tai said part of the problem was that transport projects were being implemented without adequate planning.
The PM also blamed traffic congestion in major cities on inaccurate forecasts.
A number of bypasses in Ha Noi and HCM City have turned into main roads that have contributed to the uncontrolled development of urban centres. More seriously, project designs often changed resulting in additional costs.
Historian Duong Trung Quoc said infrastructure planning must go hand-in-hand with changes in the law, education system and human resources.
He said it was vital the transport sector reviewed major projects and attracted additional investment.
He said the Government should focus its attention on developing the transport sector. — VNS