A section of the HCM City - Trung Luong Highway (Source: VNA)

Hanoi (VNA) - The Prime Minister has agreed to support 55 trillion VND (2.4 billion USD) sourced from Government bonds for construction of the North-South Highway during the 2016-2020 period.

He has asked the Ministry of Transport (MoT) to conduct a pre-feasibility study and report its results to the Government, the Giao Thong (Transport) newspaper reported on April 6, citing a Government Office announcement.

The highway will be constructed using a Public Private Partnership (PPP) model that is transparent and highly effective, the announcement said.

The Government will also provide capital support for site clearance.

The report said that a consultancy firm would be selected through a competitive bidding process to plan and design the highway construction.

The final selection will be based on cost and feasibility of their technical designs, it added.

The transport ministry will be responsible for directing the planning of component projects soon after the National Assembly approves of highway’s master plan. It will also collaborate with the ministries of Planning and Investment, Finance, Construction and Justice, and the State Bank of Vietnam to develop investment mechanisms and policies for the project, the report said.

It quoted the PM as saying the mechanisms and policies must both abide with regulations and attract investment.

He has asked the Ministry of Planning and Investment to form a State council to assess the project.

The PM has also instructed the MoT to review and adjust the plan on developing Vietnam’s expressway network until 2020 (with a vision to 2030), towards developing the North-South Highway into 6-10 lanes instead of 4, as originally proposed.

Road markers should be installed along the highway to manage land in accordance with regulations, the PM said.

The PM’s latest instructions follow the transport ministry’s submission of three proposals last December on building the North-South Highway (from Hanoi to HCM City).-VNA