Two more North-South Expressway sub-projects to be publicly funded

January 12, 2021 - 07:46
The North-South Expressway project has a total length of 654km and is divided into 11 sub-projects.


NA Chairwoman Nguyễn Thị Kim Ngân. (centre) speaks at the opening of the 52nd session of National Assembly's Standing Committee. VNA/VNS Trọng Đức

HÀ NỘI — The National Assembly Standing Committee (NASC) yesterday agreed to change two Eastern North-South Expressway sub-projects from public-private partnership to solely public.

The two sub-projects are National Highway No.45 - Nghi Sơn and Nghi Sơn-Diễn Châu.

The North-South Expressway project has a total length of 654km and is divided into 11 sub-projects. Investment for the sub-projects totals VNĐ100.8 trillion (US$4.3 billion), with VNĐ78.4 trillion sourced from the State budget.

Presenting a report at the meeting, Minister of Transport Nguyễn Văn Thể said per two previous NA resolutions, six of the 11 sub-projects were to be public-funded and five others implemented under the public-private-partnership (PPP) model.

From October 2-5 last year, project management boards opened bids to select investors for five of the sub-projects. However, only three sub-projects with two investors submitted bidding documents, namely Diễn Châu - Bãi Vọt, Nha Trang - Cam Lâm and Cam Lâm - Vinh Hảo.

The two remaining projects did not have any bids from investors, including the National Highway No.45 - Nghi Sơn and Nghi Sơn –Diễn Châu. Thus, the Government proposed the NASC consider transforming the investment models for the two projects.

Vũ Hồng Thanh, head of the NA’s Economic Affairs Committee, said the NA Standing Committee deputies were divided over the proposal.

Many deputies agreed with the Government’s proposal while some suggested reviewing the financial plan to increase the feasibility because the main reason for the unsuccessful bidding was that the financial plans of these two projects were unattractive.

The NASC’s supervisory committee concurred with the opinion of the majority of NA deputies that the two component projects have very high transport demand - ranked second and third out of five PPP investment projects, indicating their urgent need.

Nine out of the 11 component projects are expected to be completed by 2022. Of these, three PPP investment projects have completed the selection of investors while six public investment projects are being implemented by contractors. The Mỹ Thuận 2 Bridge is slated to be completed in 2023.

"Therefore, if the two component projects are not urgently implemented, it will affect the overall progress and efficiency of the whole project," Thanh said.

52nd session of NASC opens

Earlier in the morning, the NASC convened its 52nd session, chaired by NA Chairwoman Nguyễn Thị Kim Ngân.

In her opening remarks, Ngân said the first sitting of 2021 will focus on preparations for the elections of deputies to the 15th National Assembly and all-level People’s Councils for the 2021-2026 tenure.

Several draft reports on the work of the State President, the Supreme People’s Court, the Supreme People’s Procuracy, and the State Audit of Việt Nam during their term of office in 2016-2021 will also be discussed.

The NASC is expected to debate a number of proposals, including the financial settlement solution for the Vietnam Oil and Gas Group when paying for the price subsidy in the product consumption of the Nghi Sơn Refinery and Petrochemical LLC.

It will also hear Government reports on the enforcement of Item 22, Article 4 of the Law on Public Investment, and make a decision on the administrative boundary adjustment of several commune-level administrative units in Đắk Nông, Bình Định, Bắc Ninh and Hòa Bình provinces.

After the opening ceremony, under the chair of NA Vice Chairman Uông Chu Lưu, the NASC discussed and approved a resolution on regulations and guidance for the organisation of voters meetings, the process to nominate candidates for all-level People’s Councils and the NA, and another guiding the expected structure and quantity of nominated candidates for People's Councils at all levels. — VNS