The T&T Group has requested the transport ministry to allow it to invest in the Hanoi Railway Station.

The group said it would abide by current regulations and ensure a construction schedule to meet the travel requirements of the local people and tourists.

Hanoi Railway Station was established in 1902 by the French colonialists. It was rebuilt in 1976 and has become one of the largest train stations of the country.

Earlier, property giant Vingroup offered to buy Hanoi, Sai Gon and Da Nang railway stations and replace them with modern stations elsewhere in the three cities, to ease pressure on their downtown areas. The plans by private companies to invest in the railways are in response to the government's policies, which allow various economic sectors to invest in the rail sector to modernise it and ease the burden on public funds.

Transport Minister Dinh La Thang had asked the Vietnam Railway Corporation (VRC) and related entities to plan a road map for selling the operational rights of railway stations, to attract more investors and to issue bids to choose the best offers.

The VRC said it had to spend 7 trillion VND (322.58 million USD) in the 2011-15 period to upgrade the network and introduce new technologies to manage the operations.

By 2020, an estimated 2 trillion VND (92.2 million USD) more will be needed for continued implementation of these plans, and 60 trillion VND (2.79 billion USD) for 12 projects to modernise the main routes.

Earlier this year, the T&T Group also requested the ministry to allow it to buy Phu Quoc international airport in the southern province of Kien Giang.

Established in 1993, T&T Group operates in the fields of finance, industry, minerals, real estate and export. It has a charter capital of 2.5 trillion VND (115 million USD).-VNA