On August 28, the Ho Chi Minh City People’s Committee began the construction of the Ben Thanh – Suoi Tien metro line, the first of its kind in the city.

It will cost over 4.73 trillion VND (225 million USD) to build, with official development assistance coming from Japan and the remainder being funded by the city.

The 19.7 km line will run through districts 1, 2, 9, Binh Thanh and Thu Duc in HCM City and parts of Di An district in the neighbouring province of Binh Duong , and include 14 stations with three being underground.

Once completed in late 2017, the route will be able to handle 186,000 passengers every day, rising to 620,000 by 2020 and over 1 million by 2040.

Le Hoang Quan, Chairman of the municipal People’s Committee, said that the project is of great political and socio-economic significance and marks a milestone in the plans to modernise the city’s public transport system.

Minister of Transport Dinh La Thang asked the transport sector to work closely with the relevant agencies to ensure the project is of top quality and on schedule, which will symbolise the Vietnam - Japan strategic partnership.-VNA