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BOT projects must hasten electronic toll collection, says PM

Update: November, 26/2020 - 09:00

 

Electronic toll collection is implemented in a toll station. — VNA/VNS Photo Huy Hùng

HÀ NỘI — Prime Minister Nguyễn Xuân Phúc on Wednesday asked ministries and agencies to speed up the installation of electronic toll collection (ETC) systems at toll stations so that by the end of this year, all toll stations included in the national ETC project apply for cashless payment as planned previously.

Investors of build-operate-transfer (BOT) road projects will be stopped from collecting toll fees from December 31, 2020, if they fail to install and operate the ETC systems.

For toll stations that have not been planned to use ETC systems, Ministry of Transport and agencies have to review and identify the possibility for ETC application or problems to the application.

The transport ministry was also asked to speed up the work of equipping vehicles with e-tags so drivers could use the ETC systems effectively. 

The ETC will collect tolls by scanning e-tags installed on vehicles passing through toll gates, helping vehicle owners save time and fuel as they do not have to stop to pay fees at toll booths.

Việt Nam has more than 3.8 million registered automobiles and the number is expected to increase by about 500,000 vehicles yearly.

Traffic police will work with road operators and ETC service providers to extract data from toll stations to detect vehicles which are not equipped with e-tags but use ETC lanes.

According to the transport ministry, the national ETC project is implemented in two phases. In the first phase, 44 toll stations on National Highway No1 and the HCM Expressway’s part in the Central Highlands region in some other national highways will have the ETC system. In the second phase, 33 toll stations in other national highways will be equipped with the ETC system.

However, up to this month, four toll stations in the first phase have not implemented the ETC system due to problems in funding and changes of road projects. 

Of the 33 toll stations in the second phase, eight stations have suggested not implementing ETC or postponing the implementation due to low revenue from toll fees.

Three other toll stations don’t collect fees as the Government is arranging funds to buy the fee collection rights from private investors. Meanwhile, other toll stations on National Highway No 51 can collect toll fees for less than three years, which makes investors reluctant to invest in ETC systems.

According to the ministry, 19 out of 35 toll stations managed by localities have completed the installation of ETC systems and are connected with the national ETC project which is managed by the ministry.

ETC systems are installed at other 11 local toll stations while the remaining five toll stations will implement ETC as soon as the roads open for traffic. — VNS

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