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Transport ministry asks for more funding for airport renovation

Update: September, 13/2019 - 09:31


Overload has caused visible cracks and deformations on runways at the Nội Bài airport. — VNA/VNS Photo Việt Hùng

HÀ NỘI — The Ministry of Transport has submitted a report to the Prime Minister requesting funding to renovate and upgrade the runway and taxiway system at Nội Bài and Tân Sơn Nhất international airports.

According to the report, signed by transport deputy minister Lê Anh Tuấn, the two biggest international airports in the country are under great pressure.

In particular, the runway and taxiway systems of the airports have been exploited beyond designed frequency, resulting in fractures, cracks, subsidence and material falling off from the expansion joints between concrete slabs. Some parts were reported as getting muddy in rainy weather, impacting the operations of large airplanes.

While the Aviation Corporation of Việt Nam (ACV) has paid to fix the defects to ensure flight safety, investment in long-term repairs and renovation is still needed.

Previously, the Ministry of Transport made a proposal to the PM to invest in upgrading the runway and taxiway at Nội Bài International Airport and Tân Sơn Nhất under three options, namely using public investment from the medium-term public investment fund, using the ACV’s funding or using revenue from flight operations.

The Ministry of Planning and Investment had asked the Ministry of Transport to evaluate the necessity and urgency of allocating capital to renovate and upgrade runways and taxiways at the two airports.

This was to be the basis to propose to the Prime Minister to use some 10 per cent of the medium-term public investment plan for 2016-20. The transport ministry's answer was that the renovation was essential since it relates to flight safety.

However, in a separate plan submitted to the Government, the Ministry of Planning and Investment only planned to allocate to the Ministry of Transport 10 per cent of the medium-term public investment plan to repay loans for build-transfer (BT) projects and for urgent traffic projects.

Therefore, the Ministry of Transport proposed the Prime Minister consider adding more funding to the Ministry of Transport for the renovation of runways and taxiways in Nội Bài and Tân Sơn Nhất airports.

The Ministry of Transport has estimated runway renovation costs would amount to around VNĐ4.5 trillion (US$193 million). — VNS

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