The People's Committee of southern Dong Nai province expects to speed up land clearance for the construction of Long Thanh International Airport, which is slated to begin in 2015.

The construction planned to cover an area of over 5,000ha would affect 4,500 households in the province's Long Thanh district, about 40km from HCM City. It is expected to surpass Tan Son Nhat International Airport and become the biggest airport in Vietnam.

Speaking at a meeting about the preparation with the Airport Corporation of Vietnam and the Japan International Cooperation Agency last week, Vice Chairman of the provincial People's Committee Tran Van Vinh said the urgent task was to speed up the land clearance and resettlement for households in affected areas.

Out of the 4,500 affected households, 3,000 would have to move to new areas, he said, adding that other facilities including religious buildings, schools and about 1,000 graves would be removed.

Compensation and resettlement would cost over 15 trillion VND (714 million USD), he said.

He expected that project investors would arrange proper capital so that land clearance and compensation work would be started early next year and finish by 2015.

Vinh said that the province planned to develop two resettlements; each covers an area of 280ha.
The construction would need about 24,000 workers, he said, adding that the local authority would work closely with investors and contractors on employment for the dislocated residents to ensure their livelihoods.

Other facilities include water and power supplies, transport linkages and telecommunications were to be made ready for the construction work.

Long Thanh International Airport would cost an estimated 300 billion JPY (3.6 billion USD) for its major components, including the runway and air traffic control centre.

Mitsubishi Corp, Taisei Corp, Japan Airport Consultants Inc and Narita International Airport Corp used capital from JICA to conduct research on the project.

The airport is planned to become operational by 2020, when its capacity could reach 25 million passengers and 1.2 million tonnes of cargo per year.

By 2030, it is expected to have four runways and four terminals, one of the largest in the region with a designed capacity of 100 million passengers and 5 million tonnes of cargo every year, receiving 90 percent of international flights and 20 percent of local flights to and from HCM City.-VNA