The National Assembly on October 30 listened to a report on the government’s planning, investment, construction and operation of hydropower projects.

According to the report, hydropower projects have made important contributions to ensuring energy security, serving the country’s socio-economic development.

Operational hydropower plants, with a total capacity of 14,240.5 MW, provide about 50 billion kWh of electricity each year to the national grid, meeting 37.5 percent of the country’s current total power demand.

The management of the projects’ quality has basically been ensured in accordance with the law, the report said, noting that all problems and damages occur in the plants have been promptly handled to ensure the projects’ safety and minimise bad impacts.

The verification report by the NA’s Committee for Science-Technology and Environment hailed the efforts of the government as well as ministries, sectors and localities in the field, while underscoring the principle of eliminating unqualified projects that may affect the environment, threaten the safety of local residents, or have low efficiency, thus having negative impacts on the local socio-economic situation.

The same day, the deputies also discussed the government’s proposal on the adjustment and supplementations to the NA’s Resolution No. 38/2004/QH11 dated December 3, 2004 on the construction of the Ho Chi Minh Road – a key transportation project running across the country from north to south, which is expected to help ease traffic congestion for the National Highway 1.

Resolution 38 set the goal of completing the road with two lanes in 2010, and then upgrading the route to meet the national highway standards in 2020.

However, due to difficulties in capital and ground clearance, the project has been delayed, with construction on many sections suspended. In addition, a number of contents in the project’s design were adjusted in 2012 to be in sync with the master plan on highway road system and transport development until 2020 with a vision to 2030.

In that context, the government has proposed extending the completion deadline of the entire road from Pac Bo-Dat Mui to 2015, while the road’s total length would be expanded to 3,183 km, 16 km longer than the initial design.

Agreeing with the government’s proposal, the Committee for Science-Technology and Environment said it is necessary to revise and supplement the resolution on the construction of the road, adding a number of solutions to continue its effective implementation.

During the working day, the deputies also debated the draft revised Bidding Law.-VNA