Fee collection of controversial tollbooth might extend over 12 years

The statement was made by Mr. Nguyen Danh Huy, head of Public Private Partnership Projects Management Board under the Ministry of Transport, at a press conference on problems relating to the BOT station.

The toll reduction affects the financial plan of the project comprising capital recovery time and bank interest. Therefore, toll collection period is estimated to extend to 12-14 years, affirmed him.

On Wednesday the Ministry of Transport, the People’s Committee of Tien Giang province and investors met and agreed to cut 30 percent tolls for all types of vehicles through the station. However, residents have disagreed with that solution saying that the tollbooth’s position should be changed to ensure fairness for residents.

In response, deputy minister Nguyen Ngoc Dong said that the tollbooth position had been chosen in the scope of the project with the agreement of local authorities, relevant ministries and agencies to meet capital recovery plan for investors. So it was unnecessary to remove, he said.

The target of BOT investment method is to reduce pressure on the state budget. Therefore the state cannot spend on buying the tollbooth amid the current scenario, added him.

Replying to queries that why the upgrading of National Highway 1A did not use the road maintenance fee fund, Mr. Dong said that the fund is just spent on simple repairs of roads not upgrading. The Investment Law and Decree 108 permit mobilization of BOT funds to upgrade road face, bridges and drainage systems.

Fee collection time of controversial tollbooth might extend over 12 years ảnh 1Deputy Minister of Transport Nguyen Ngoc Dong at the press conference (Photo:  SGGP) 

At the conference, deputy minister Nguyen Ngoc Dong admitted that the Ministry of Transport has not anticipated problems arising during the implementation of BOT projects and it has sometimes been passive in many situations.

From this fact, the ministry is striking the balance of BOT projects and review vehicular traffic volume to adjust tolls and collection time.

Relevant agencies are making efforts to create a complete legal corridor for BOT investment form, build a financial mechanism for BOT projects and develop an efficient supervision mechanism to ensure transparency.

By BICH QUYEN – Translated by Hai Mien

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