The Economic Commission under the National Assembly (NA), Vietnam’s highest legislative body, has proposed capital be earmarked for a mega airport project adjacent to Ho Chi Minh City before its feasibility study (F/S) is finished.
The proposal was put forward by Nguyen Van Giau, head of the commission, at the opening of the last session of the NA’s 13th tenure in Hanoi on Monday.
To guarantee that the first phase of the Long Thanh International Airport is finished in line with the NA-approved roadmap, special mechanisms should be adopted for land revocation, site clearance and resettlement so that its construction can be kicked off on schedule, the commission stressed.
After a field trip earlier this year, Mr. Giau was concerned that the construction of the airport would only start in 2023, five years behind the NA-approved schedule, if the project had to go through all due procedures currently.
After the NA turned a green light to the project in mid-2015, Airports Corporation of Vietnam (ACV), the investor of the airport, said in April 2016 it would announced the consultant(s) chosen to carry out the F/S so that the report can be submitted in July 2017.
However, an ACV official has told VnExpress that the F/S report could be submitted in mid-2018 at the earliest.
If the site clearance starts only when the F/S is approved, this phase will not be completed until 2021, said Tran Van Vinh, vice chairman of the People’s Committee of Dong Nai province, where the airport will be located.
The controversial Long Thanh airport is designed to serve 25 million passengers per year in the first phase, and its capacity will be raised to 100 million passengers later.
The airport has an estimated cost of $16 billion, of which the first phase will cost $5.32 billion.
According to local media reports last year, as many as seven contractors from the U.S., Japan and Europe expressed hopes to carry out the F/S of the airport.