Viet Reader.


Premier Newspaper for Vietnamese Worldwide

220km metro in Ho Chi Minh City: 100 or 12 years?

Ho Chi Minh City is looking to complete 220km of metro within 12 years because it would take up to 100 years if done the old way.

This morning, December 15, Chairman of Ho Chi Minh City People's Committee Phan Van Mai chaired the meeting of the Advisory Council to implement Resolution No. 98.

The fact that Ho Chi Minh City leaders met for the first time with the Consulting Group of Experts to build and develop the Ho Chi Minh City urban railway system after its establishment shows the city's determination to start working to implement the mechanism effectively immediately. The country's largest special mechanism for developing urban transport infrastructure.

Ho Chi Minh City concretizes Resolution 98

Speaking at the meeting of experts and scientists, Mr. Phan Van Mai said that after Resolution 98 took effect, the city has proactively coordinated with central ministries and branches in concretizing the regulations and the content of specific mechanisms and policies.

There is still a decree that the Prime Minister has assigned to the Ministry of Finance and Home Affairs to advise, and it is expected to be submitted to the Government for promulgation in December. As for instructions on deploying rooftop solar power and carbon credits, Ho Chi Minh City has also proactively researched and proposed.

"Since Resolution 98 was issued, the City People's Committee has submitted it to the City People's Council, and after only 4 months, Ho Chi Minh City has specified the issues under the city's authority related to this Resolution," - Mr. Mai informed.

The Chairman of Ho Chi Minh City People's Committee also said that in February 2024, Ho Chi Minh City will have a thematic meeting of the City People's Council, and the city will continue to present the remaining contents related to Resolution 98.

"Therefore, I hope experts will suggest many new ways of doing things, from the policy mechanisms and practices of Ho Chi Minh City, but there are no or unclear legal regulations to report to the Politburo and the National Assembly for Please have an implementation mechanism", - the leader expressed.

He shared that we discussed TOD for urban railways and financial centers. We all need to apply the spirit of Resolution 98 and affirm that Ho Chi Minh City can mobilize capital and organize implementation. Appropriately deployed to discuss urban development, financial centers can apply in the future.

The Chairman of Ho Chi Minh City People's Committee also requested that the Advisory Council, during the research process, propose to the city how to organize and implement projects on BT, BOT, and urban railways effectively.

Also read: BOT projects incur losses, investors and banks worry about bad debts » Vietnam News - Latest Updates and World Insights |

It took 100 years to build 220km of metro.

Chairman of Ho Chi Minh City People's Committee Phan Van Mai reiterated that according to the current planning, Ho Chi Minh City will have about 220 km of urban railway system in the next 12 years.

This planning is nearly 20 years old, but just one metro line, No. 1 alone, has taken 15-16 years and "we keep struggling with 20 km".

Mr. Mai was frank: if the city continues to maintain this approach, borrow ODA capital, and prepare for investment and construction, perhaps 220 km will take 50-70 years, even 100 years, to complete. 

According to the Chairman of Ho Chi Minh City People's Committee, Conclusion 49 of the recent Politburo requires basic completion of urban railway infrastructure with 220 km. This is a very important decision, serving as a basis for the City to propose mechanisms and develop projects for implementation.

Chairman of Ho Chi Minh City People's Committee Phan Van Mai said that from July 2023, Ho Chi Minh City has established a Working Group to build a project to complete 220 km urban railway.

Mr. Mai affirmed that Ho Chi Minh City will urgently complete the project this year and submit it to the Politburo in early 2024.

Ho Chi Minh City may propose to implement this section first and the other section later, but it must be done in one project and policy mechanism.

This year, the City must complete the Project to submit to the City People's Council and report to the Politburo and the National Assembly Standing Committee to submit to the mid-2024 meeting on the Ho Chi Minh City urban railway project.

In addition, Ho Chi Minh City will coordinate with Hanoi to make recommendations instead of doing it separately as currently. The project will be submitted to the National Assembly at the May 2025 session.

"We have to implement 220 km of urban railway from now until 2035; currently, there are only 12 years left. Compared to the time to build metro No. 1, we need a different way to do 220 km of urban railway." , - Ho Chi Minh City Law Newspaper quoted the statement of the Chairman of the City People's Committee stating clearly.

Also read: Another metro line in Hanoi conducts trial run » Vietnam News - Latest Updates and World Insights |

What does Ho Chi Minh City need to do?

Regarding the capital mobilization mechanism, firstly, it is necessary to mobilize large enough capital to do the work, allowing Ho Chi Minh City and Hanoi to mobilize credit to invest in focused work and this issue must be asked of the National Assembly because it exceeds regulations.

Second, regulations on investment procedures need to be more special and shorter. With the reality of metro No. 1, the city spent 9 years preparing the project. Therefore, Mr. Mai noted that we need to shorten the preparation time to 3-4 years and the construction time to 3 years to complete the proposed task.

Third, the city can develop an urban railway system, which also requires maintenance, development, and association with Vietnam's urban railway industry.

Another problem is when the city already has an Urban Railway Management Board, Metro Operation Management Company No. 1 and must form an appropriate management model in the future. Mr. Mai said these are very big issues that need policy mechanisms and approval from the National Assembly.

Is it possible?

At the meeting, presenting the draft project to develop the Ho Chi Minh City urban railway system, the representative of the Ho Chi Minh City Urban Railway Project Management Board said that the goal of implementing 200km metro by 2035 is completely feasible if approach with new thinking, new ways of going that are truly groundbreaking.

Noting that completing 200km of metro line No. 1 is "absolutely correct and cannot be later if we do not want to fall further and further behind urban areas in the region", Mr. Dang Huy Dong - Director of the Institute of Planning Research and development (former Deputy Minister of Planning and Investment) reminded that this could also be an impossible task if implemented with current legal regulations.

The project proposes 6 specific mechanisms to realize the above goal. In particular, there are mechanisms for planning, land recovery compensation, financial mechanisms, investment project management...

In particular, it is proposed for Ho Chi Minh City to prepare and approve a 1/500 planning of the metro system according to the TOD station area as a basis for auctioning the right to develop TOD projects, creating investment revenue for the construction of the metro system. Proposing the National Assembly to approve the investment policy of an urban railway system project with a total length of about 200km combined with urban development and embellishment of the TOD area according to planning, completed in 2035 and decentralized and authorized for Ho Chi Minh City to decide related issues.

Since then, representatives of the Ho Chi Minh City Urban Railway Management Board believe it will help Ho Chi Minh City complete the goal of 200km of urban railways by 2035 and save more than 10 billion USD in total investment compared to the current method.

Also, according to Mr. Dong, with a total length of 200km, 100 urban areas can be deployed according to the TOD model. These urban areas create 1 million apartments, so half of the city's population can enjoy civilized and modern living conditions, with full social institutions of education, health care, sports, and parks. , green trees, fresh air, improving community health.

This contributes to reducing at least 50% of personal vehicles, traffic congestion, and environmental pollution to improve Ho Chi Minh City's competitiveness in attracting domestic and international tourism and investment.

"Very difficult task"

At the conference, experts all gave frank suggestions on how the city could implement the project feasibly.

Former Deputy Minister of Transport Nguyen Ngoc Dong noted that the project must be profound, comprehensive and highly feasible. We must also recognize the current shortcomings and analyze the causes and solutions to have appropriate mechanisms and policies to propose to the Central Government for mechanisms. The organization and implementation must be closely coordinated under the chairmanship of the Ho Chi Minh City People's Committee.

Architect Ngo Viet Nam Son acknowledged that developing 200km of metro by 2035 is a "very difficult task". He pointed out that Ho Chi Minh City implemented metro project No. 1 with a length of about 20km, but it took 15-16 years, so it is necessary to point out the shortcomings and bottlenecks of metro project No. 1 and then divide Fields and contents are focused on resolving completely to shorten the time to complete metro No. 1 within 3-5 years. From there, there will be a framework to implement other metro projects simultaneously.

With experience implementing the TOD model in other countries, architect Ngo Viet Nam Son suggested that Ho Chi Minh City needs to be careful in assessing the ability to recover capital.

Developing an infrastructure line from land acquisition to capital recovery to the budget takes many years. Making a metro is not only for Ho Chi Minh City but for the whole country because metro development is the development of the country's metro industry. Architect Ngo Viet Nam Son also stated that when choosing technology, one must be very careful to apply the same technology to the whole country.

Professor Tran Van Tho, Honorary Professor of Waseda University, Japan, believes that if Ho Chi Minh City successfully builds 200km of metro in the next 12 years, it will significantly contribute to Vietnam's development by 2045. This project also will build Vietnam's railway industry.

About author
You should write because you love the shape of stories and sentences and the creation of different words on a page.
View all posts
More on this story