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Long Thanh airport project may lag behind schedule

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HCMC – The Ministry of Planning and Investment has expressed concern that the Long Thanh international airport project in Dong Nai Province might not get off ground in 2021 as scheduled, as the disbursement of capital for site clearance works has met a mere 10% of the target.

The project was allocated VND18.5 trillion in funding under the medium-term public investment plan for the 2016-2020 period.

Activities including land recall, compensation, and resettlement support have to be completed before next year, as stipulated in the National Assembly’s Resolution No. 53. Besides this, the provincial government of Dong Nai in early April this year pledged to disburse all of the capital assigned for 2020.

However, the project saw only over VND689 billion in funding disbursed during the first half of this year, taking the total amount of disbursed capital to over VND1.8 trillion, only meeting 10% of the target, which is much lower than the rate pledged by the provincial authority, the ministry stated in its report sent to the Government regarding the disbursement progress of public capital for the country’s major projects.

The sluggish site clearance and resettlement will slow down the progress of other works, it added.

The provincial government recently assured the relevant agencies that it would finish site clearance works and hand over 1,810 hectares of land at a priority area during the year, draw up compensation plans for the remaining areas in 2020 and hand over cleared sites in the second quarter of 2021.

The slow progress of the project was also tabled for discussion at a meeting between the prime minister and local authorities on July 16.

Minister of Transport Nguyen Van The noted at the meeting that the Transport Ministry had worked with various localities, urging the disbursement of capital for traffic infrastructure projects. He warned the leaders of the relevant agencies of consequences if their projects faced slow disbursement.

The Long Thanh airport project, which will be developed on an area of 5,000 hectares in Dong Nai Province, east of HCMC, is designed to handle 100 million passengers and five million tons of cargo per year. The project requires over VND336 trillion (US$16 billion) in investment.

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