Monday,  Sep 24, 2018,07:10 (GMT+7) 0 0
EIB okays new loan for metro line project in Hanoi
Tu Hoang
Thursday,  Jan 11, 2018,18:53 (GMT+7)

EIB okays new loan for metro line project in Hanoi

Tu Hoang

Ambassador Bruno Angelet (L), head of the Delegation of the European Union to Vietnam, and Jonathan Taylor, vice president of the European Investment Bank, are at a press conference in Hanoi on January 10 - PHOTO: TU HOANG

HANOI - The European Investment Bank (EIB) will offer a loan of 143 million euros (US$171.4 million) for a project to develop metro line No. 3 in Hanoi City, connecting Hanoi Station and Nhon Station, said EIB vice president Jonathan Taylor.

At a press conference in Hanoi on January 10, Taylor said the 12.5-kilometer elevated urban railway with 12 stations would improve public transit in the capital.

Asked by the Daily over a threefold increase in the project’s capital and slow progress (some three years behind schedule), Taylor said he had visited the project site and was informed of the project progress. The contractor has committed to speeding up the construction pace.

EIB attaches no conditions to the loan, so Vietnam has the right to apply any technologies from any providers, Taylor noted.

EIB has provided more than 710 million euros in loans for investment in Vietnam since 1998.

Ambassador Bruno Angelet, head of the Delegation of the European Union to Vietnam, noted at the press conference that EIB is willing to offer soft loans for Vietnam at a time when international donors are reducing concessional funds for the country. At a meeting with EIB, Vietnamese officials said Vietnam has high demand for EIB’s loans as the World Bank and the Asian Development Bank have stopped offering official development assistance (ODA) for the country.

EIB, which is the world’s largest international public bank and is owned by 28 European Union (EU) members, offers an interest rate of 0%, Angelet said.

The ambassador expected Vietnam could receive more such loans from EIB after the EU-Vietnam Free Trade Agreement (EVFTA) is ratified and takes effect.

At an earlier meeting with EIB, Vietnamese Deputy Prime Minister Trinh Dinh Dung proposed the bank continue supporting Vietnam to develop infrastructure, especially traffic and energy facilities, and response to climate change and rising sea levels.

As for traffic infrastructure, Vietnam has plans to build the North-South Expressway, airports, seaports and connecting facilities to develop logistics services to help enterprises reduce costs and increase the economy’s competitiveness.

In addition, Vietnam, which is among the countries most vulnerable to climate change, needs loans to cushion severe impacts of climate change and develop highly vulnerable areas, the deputy PM said.

Minister of Transport Nguyen Van The introduced some large projects in Vietnam such as the North-South express railway and Long Thanh International Airport.

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