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Thursday, October 21, 2021

Railway industry hard hit by Covid-19

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HCMC – Vietnam Railways has seen its business slump as the number of passengers has tumbled due to the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic, according to the government portal chinhphu.vn.

Between January and September this year, the enterprise’s total goods transport volume was estimated at over 3.6 million tons or 99% of last year’s figure, while the number of passengers was around three million or just 45.7%.

The corporation saw its revenue slump by some 34.2% year-on-year, equivalent to over VND1.1 trillion. The revenue of the parent firm was at around VND1.3 trillion, resulting in a loss of over VND428 billion, according to its recently released report.

In the nine months of this year, over 1,600 employees of Vietnam Railways were short of jobs due to the pandemic, of which 423 had to take unpaid leave from five to 11 days and over 1,200 others had their labor contracts suspended.

To cope with the challenges, the corporation has initiated measures to improve the quality of service and attract passengers. It has flexibly revised ticket prices for different distances and introduced discounts between 12% and 30% for the North-South and local trains.

The corporation has also reduced ineffective passenger trains, increased freight trains and combined the two types in one trip to reduce operation costs. Further, it has been seeking new clients and exploiting international routes to maintain stable freight transport orders.

At present, Vietnam Railways has resumed local trains on the Saigon-Danang and Hanoi-Lao Cai routes to serve travelers. However, the number of passengers remains low as tourists are still afraid of the pandemic.

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