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Transport authorities crack down on road maintenance failures

Update: August, 09/2014 - 09:02
Workers repair a barrier on National Highway 1 passing through central Nghe An. Incompetent local transport departments will be stopped from managing road maintenance. – VNA/VNS Photo Ngo Lich

HA NOi  (VNS) — Viet Nam Road Administration wants the Ministry of Transport to stop leaving the management of road maintenance to incompetent local transport departments.

At a conference yesterday on evaluating the situation, the administration said that the management quality varied widely.

At present, 50 per cent of highway maintenance is controlled by 49 departments nation-wide.

Figures show that only six of the 49 departments managed road maintenance properly. They included offices in Phu Tho, Tuyen Quang, Quang Binh, Quang Tri, Kon Tum and Ben Tre.

Eight departments cited for poor quality management were Son La, Lai Chau, Vinh Phuc, Hai Phong, Ninh Binh, Nghe An, Lam Dong and Kien Giang.

Nguyen Van Huyen, head of the Viet Nam Road Administration told Vietnam News Agency that some departments did not pay much attention to their task. For example, the choice of materials for road repairs in some localities was responsible for causing subsidence in roads.

He added that the restriction of funds for highway road maintenance also contributed to the ineffectiveness of management.

"The real cost of regular maintenance annually is estimated to be about VND19 trillion (US$896 million). However, the State only allocates VND5 trillion ($235 million)," he said.

As a result, the administration asked the departments to give priority to the routes seriously downgraded or affected by floodings.

Huyen said to make the management of road fund more effective, it was necessary to seeks bid and find the best qualified contractors.

These contractors must meet requirements on equipment, machines and human resources.

Huyen added that the administration would strengthen inspections on the management of departments, examine their performance annually and stop assigning the management of maintenance funds to those who were incompetent. — VNS

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