approve JBIC-funded, $1-billion urban railway project
HCM City — The municipal
People’s Committee has approved a US$1.09-billion metro railway project.
The project’s two lines
will travel a total of 19.7 kilometres from Ben Thanh Market in District 1 to
Suoi Tien Park and will be primarily funded via a $904-million official
development assistance (ODA) loan from the Japan Bank for International
The remaining $186 million
will come from city coffers.
Nguyen Viet Son, deputy
manager of the Department for Transport and Public Works, said construction will
begin next year.
The railway system’s
first line runs underground in District 1 through the intersection of Le Loi and
Pasteur to Nguyen Sieu Street, while the second is at road level, running 17.1km
from Van Thanh canal to Long Binh depot.
The Ministry of Planning
and Investment and People’s Committee have agreed to use JBIC’s special
terms for economic partnership (STEP).
As per STEP conditions,
the project must apply Japanese urban railway standards, while JBIC has agreed
to provide the ODA loan with a 40-year repayment term and 10-year grace period
City officials expect the
mammoth project to be ready for traffic in 2012. — VNS