The Ho Chi Minh City Urban Civil Works Construction Investment Management Authority has started work on a package to improve HCM City's urban and domestic sanitation by expanding the daily capacity of a large-scale Binh Hung sewage treatment facility from 141,000 to 469,000 cubic metres.

The expanded capacity will be sufficient to meet wastewater treatment needs of about 1.4 million people, and will make the plant one of the largest sewage treatment facilities in Southeast Asia.

The package belongs to the second phase of a project to rehabilitate the HCM City water environment in a basin area of 2,150ha along Tau Hu, Ben Nghe, Doi and Te canals in districts 4,5,6, 8, 10 and 11.

The contract for the plant expansion was awarded to a three-company consortium represented by POSCO Engineering & Construction, Ltd., a major construction company from the Republic of Korea, Hitachi, and OTV, a subsidiary of Veolia Water Solutions & Technologies, a French environmental services group, and Hitachi.

The package worth 2.8 trillion VND (131.5 million USD) funded by loans from the Japanese government will be carried out within 54 months. The expanded treatment facility is scheduled for operation in August 2019.

The expansion will make the plant one of the largest wastewater treatment facilities in Southeast Asia, according to Hitachi.

Kunizo Sakai, president & CEO of Hitachi's Infrastructure Systems Company, said plans are currently underway for future sewage infrastructure development projects in Vietnam, seeking to contribute to maintaining and improving the water environment in Vietnam.

The expansion project in HCM City is the second large-scale project awarded to Hitachi and OTV, following orders received in 2014 for a 199,000 cubic metre desalination plant and pre-treatment facilities in Basrah, Iraq, the largest of its kind in the country.

Currently, HCM City has only two operational wastewater treatment facilities, including the first stage of the Binh Hung plant and Binh Hung Hoa facility with a daily processing capacity of 30,000 cubic meters.

According to the HCM City Steering Centre of Urban Flood Control Programme, the city will start work on the first phase of Nhieu Loc – Thi Nghe wastewater treatment plant this year. Costing some 478 million USD, the project has a designed capacity of 480,000 cubic metres per day.

Treated wastewater now accounts for a low 13.2 percent of the total amount of wastewater discharged in the city. The city is calling for investment in 12 plants to treat three million cubic metres of wastewater per day.-VNA