Ho Chi Minh City-based Yen Khanh Service Trading Production Co Ltd put in a massive 2 trillion VND (95 million USD) for the toll collection rights of one of the nation's flagship expressways.

According to the Ministry of Transport, payment for the City's Trung Luong Expressway will be made in three phases over six months in exchange for permission to collect toll fees at four major toll booths– at Cho Dem, Ben Luc, Tan An and Than Cuu Nghia from January 1 next year.

The Cuu Long Infrastructure Investment Development and Management Corporation (Cuu Long CIMP) was commissioned to sign the contract and transfer the toll booths to the company.

"The toll collection right will last just five years because it will be difficult for investors to mobilise capital to buy the right to a longer period of toll collection," Deputy Minister of Transport Nguyen Hong Truong told Thoi bao Kinh Te Sai Gon (Saigon Economic Times).

The bid follows an earlier purchase by the BIDV Expressway Development Company (BEDC) for more than 9.1 trillion VND (433 million USD).

The BEDC agreement was initially intended for a 25-year period following the expressway's completion in 2010, but collapsed a year later due to capital problems.

The Cuu Long CIPM was assigned to collect the fees on behalf of the ministry from February last year, while also opening bids to investors.

Toll amounts reached 380 billion VND (18 million USD in the first year, of which, 65 billion VND (3 million USD) was spent on annual road maintenance.

The six-lane road, with a length of 62km, was built at a cost of nearly 10 trillion VND (476 million USD). The major highway connects Ho Chi Minh City to Tien Giang province in the Mekong Delta and allows vehicles to travel at 120km per hour.-VNA