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Stalled Can Tho refinery project may lose licence

Update: July, 16/2012 - 10:42

CAN THO — The municipal People's Committee has been advised to revoke the Can Tho oil refinery project with a registered capital of US$538 million as investors have failed to develop it after repeated extensions.

Participants at the fourth session of Can Tho People's Council in 2011–16 term recently made the suggestion.

Licensed in May 2008, the project is a joint venture between Viet Nam's Vien Dong Investment and Trade Joint Stock Co and the US-based Semtech Limited, with the Vietnamese company owning 30 per cent of the holdings.

In July 2009, the developer asked to adjust the refinery's area down to 50ha from the projected 250ha in the city's O Mon District, with an accompanying investment capital of $350 million.

This move was attributable to the investor's decision to revise its production line and technology after its fact finding tour overseas.

Despite the municipal People's Committee's approval to slash the refinery's area, the investors, however, have yet to pay in advance money used for land clearance compensation, estimated to cost VND150 billion ($7.1 million).

Duong Cam Thuy, Deputy director of the municipal Planning and Investment Department said Vien Dong Investment and Trade Joint Stock Co found a new partner after the US Semtech Limited withdrew from the project in 2009 and submitted documents proving its financial capacities to her department.

"We have been investigating these documents, collecting opinions from relevant authorities and then will consider some revisions of terms of the previous investment licence," Thuy said.

Meanwhile, the city's People's Committee has decided to withdraw eight real estate projects in the city due to slow implementation.

These projects included An Binh new urban area, residential areas in Hung Thach and Phu Thu Ward, South Can Tho office building, hotel and urban area complex and Chau Van Liem Ward resettlement area in O Mon District. — VNS

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