Toll fares cut at 23 stations: Transport Ministry hinh anh 1Dai Xuyen toll station on the Cau Gie-Ninh Binh Expressway. (Photo: Vietnam Expressway Corporation)
Hanoi (VNA) - Toll fares, so far, have been reduced at 23 Build- Operate -Transfer (BOT) toll stations nationwide, Deputy Minister of Transport Nguyen Hong Truong said.

The move follows a government direction according to which the Transport Ministry must work with the Finance Ministry to reduce BOT toll fees by 10-15 percent at 45 operating booths across the country.

“BOT toll cost reduction this time is mainly at five important highways -- highways No.1, No.5, No.51, No.1 from HCM City to Trung Luong and HCM National Highway through the Central Highland region,” Truong said.

“These stations have a high volume of vehicles running through, so the reduction will significantly boost business and production.”

Accordingly, the rate for the first group (cars with less than 12 seats and under two tonnes or buses) and the second group (cars with 12-30 seats, weighing 2-4 tonnes), has decreased from 45,000 VND (2 USD) or higher to 35,000-40,000 VND (1.6-1.7 USD).

For the fourth group (10-18 tonne vehicles, 20-feet containers) and the fifth group (more than 18 tonnes, 40-feet containers), the new rate applicable is 20,000 VND (0.9 USD).

There are 86 BOT toll stations nationwide under management of the Transport Ministry. Among these, 45 stations are collecting or are to collect fees. The local media has several times in the past reported that the increased toll fares on BOT national highways have angered commuters. Every day, locals who travel just a few hundred metres are forced to pay the toll, the paper reported.

Prior to the reduction, the toll at the station was fixed, with the lowest rate set at 25,000 VND (1.1 USD) and the highest rate set at 180,000 VND (8.1 USD).

In a related development, Deputy Minister Truong Quang Nghia asked the Vietnam Road Administration to remove the Dai Xuyen toll station on the Cau Gie-Ninh Binh Expressway no later than January 1 next year.

According to Mai Tuan Anh, General Director of the Vietnam Expressway Corporation (VEC), the Dai Xuyen toll station collector, nearly 150 traffic jam cases were recorded from 2011 until now near the toll booth. In 2015 and the first half of 2016 alone, there were 70 cases.

Congestion was seen on both sides of the booth, covering a distance of 0.3km and going up to 3km.

Anh said the two toll stations located on the nearly 100km expressway are not necessary. The elimination of the Dai Xuyen toll station will help vehicles travel faster.

The two tolls on the highway are now under management of VEC and BOT Phap Van -Cau Gie Joint Stock Company.

Nguyen Van Huyen, head of the Vietnam Road Administration, said toll collecting systems of these two units would be given to Software-Design Automation-Control Joint Stock Company (Cadro Company) to set up a shared collecting method on the whole expressway, using electric cards and by removing paper cards.

It also meant that drivers had to pay one time at one station when travelling on the expressway. Profits will be divided between VEC and BOT Phap Van-Cau Gie Company.

He also asked the Cadpro company to make fee collecting technology public to ensure benefits for locals and businesses.

Dai Xuyen toll station is located at km212 315 on the Cau Gie-Ninh Binh Expressway, connecting the capital’s city centre with northern Ninh Binh province.-VNA