Sunday , June 23 2024

Vietnamese Government, JICA signs ODA loan for Bến Thành – Suối Tiên urban railway line

The Bến Thành – Suối Tiên line, belonging to Hồ Chí Minh City Urban Railway Construction Project.— Photo courtesy of JICA Việt Nam

HÀ NỘI — The Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) has signed a loan agreement with the Government of Việt Nam to provide more than JPY 41.2 billion (US$292 million) for the Bến Thành – Suối Tiên line, belonging to Hồ Chí Minh City Urban Railway Construction Project.

This is the fourth ODA loan for the project.

The construction of the urban railway’s line will alleviate traffic congestion and air pollution while promoting regional economic development.

This project will also contribute to the achievement of Sustainable Development Goal 9 (industry, innovation and infrastructure),  Sustainable Development Goal 11 (sustainable cities and communities) and Sustainable Development Goal 13 (climate action).

Special Terms for Economic Partnership (STEP) will apply to the Japanese ODA loan of the project. Japanese technology used in the project includes underground civil engineering, rolling stocks, electricity-communication-signalling system and maintenance.

STEP refers to special assistance terms for promoting the visibility of Japanese aid through a transfer of outstanding Japanese technology and expertise to developing nations. The main contract is Japan tied and subcontracting is general untied. The main agreement partner must generally be a Japanese company, an overseas subsidiary of a Japanese company, or a joint venture between a Japanese company and the borrowing country where the Japanese company is the lead partner, although under certain conditions a joint venture between a Japanese company (which is the lead partner of the joint venture) and an affiliated company (as accounted under the equity method) of a Japanese company may be the main agreement partner.

A train takes part in a trial on the Bến Thành – Suối Tiên line in HCM CIty. — Photo courtesy of JICA Việt Nam

The Bến Thành – Suối Tiên line is one of eight metro lines approved by the Prime Minister to form a mass public transport system for large urban areas in the country. The project has four main bidding packages using ODA loans from the Japanese Government. This is the first urban railway project in HCM City.

The line is about 19.7km in length with three underground stations of Bến Thành, HCM City Opera House and Ba Son, along with 11 flyover stations, consisting of Văn Thánh, Tân Cảng, Thảo Điền, An Phú, Rạch Chiếc, Phước Long, Bình Thái, Thủ Đức, High-tech Zone, HCM City National University and Suối Tiên Terminal.

The first test ran on nine kilometres of elevated track between Suối Tiên Station and Bình Thái Station on December 21 in 2022. The elevated section is designed for trains to run at a speed of 110 kilometres per hour, but during the test run, the train ran at a speed of 40 kilometres per hour.

It completed a full-line trial-run from Bến Thành Market in District 1 to Suối Tiên Theme Park in Thủ Đức City for the first time on August 29, 2023.

The line was constructed since 2012 and expected to be put into operation next year.— VNS

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