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Pushing the Mekong Delta’s agricultural products towards the sea
By Phap Luat Newspaper, 28 Dec 2009

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The improvement project of navigational channel to the Bassac river shall help ease the road and waterway traffic system in HCM city and facilitate the Mekong Delta to export its cargos. More than VND 360 trillion is invested in the Vietnam’s seaport system.

On December 27th 2009, the Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung has officially launched the construction commencement of the improvement project of navigational channel to the Bassac river. This is a national focal project aiming the construction of more stable navigational channel for full-load 10.000 DWT and partial-load 20.000 DWT vessels to navigate at the ports on the Bassac river…

This is a new-born navigational channel which is shaped based on the dredging and improvement of Quan Chanh channel section (19 km long), existing sea channel section (6 km long) and Bypass canal (9 km long) connecting the above channel sections.

Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung launching the construction commencement – Photo: G.TUE

Easing the traffic in Ho Chi Minh city

At the ground-breaking ceremony, the Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung highlights this event plays an extremely important role in the development of the Mekong Delta in general and maritime field in particular, marking a significant step in pushing the agricultural products towards the sea and promoting the socio-economic growth and industrialization – modernization of the Mekong Delta. The project shall help ease the traffic in Ho Chi Minh and road and waterway traffic system connecting Ho Chi Minh city with the Mekong Delta’s provinces. Also, exports/imports shall not have to be transited at the ports in Ho Chi Minh city, which helps economize the transportation cost, fostering the competitiveness, promoting the Mekong Delta’s stronger development and facilitating the cooperation between the Eastern and Western South. Simultaneously, the project lays a solid foundation for the Mekong Delta to perfectly implement the marine strategy put forward by the Central Government, enhancing the domestic economic growth and international economic integration.

The Prime Minster requests Tra Vinh province People’s Committee to continue guiding the local authorities to ensure the clearance work and social security in order to facilitate the project implementation. The Ministry of Transport, Vietnam Maritime Administration and relevant Agencies are required to mobilize all necessary sources, instructing the contractor to implement the project upon the requirements of progress, effectiveness, safety and environment.

Facilities being available for the dredging and smoothing of channel upon the project - Photos: G.TUE

Promoting the regional development

The project consulted by the Association between Portcoast (Vietnam) – Nippon Koei (Japan) and DHI (Denmark) as a sub-consultant consists of the main work items: one-way channel of 40 km long, turning basin, breakwater, bank protection dike, ferry, 500T barge berth, jetty, embankment, navigation AIDS and marine information equipment.

The whole channel from the Bassac river to the estuary has a length of about 40 km, crossing Long Toan, Long Khanh, Dan Thanh, Long Vinh and Ngu Lac (Duyen Hai district) and Dinh An, Dai An, Don Xuan and Don Chau (Tra Cu district).

The project owned by Vietnam Maritime Administration is capitalized from the Government bond with a total of around VND 5 trillion. The project is scheduled to come into operation by end 201, with a cargo throughput of about 22 million tons/year, serving the cargo export/import of the Mekong Delta and drawing the foreign investment.


According to the Minister of Transport, the export/import cargo volume of the Mekong Delta reaches nearly 15 million tons/year whilst the river and sea port system is under poor development. For evidence, Cai Lui and Can Tho ports can accommodate vessels of 3.000-5000 tons only via Dinh An estuary, where there is the constant presence of deposit. For this reason, Vietnam Maritime Administration has to pay approximately VND 15 billion per year for the dredging work at Dinh An estuary. Yet, the re-deposit occurs following 2-3 months. Due to the impossibility of shipping cargos by sea, 70 – 80% of export cargo volume must be transited at the ports in Ho Chi Minh and Vung Tau by road. And, as calculated by the specialists, the transiting of cargos at the ports shall increase the transportation and storage costs by $170-180/container or $7-8/ton. Also, the cargo transportation by road shall put more pressure on the National highway 1A.

According to the Ministry of Transport, the project is a breakthrough for pushing the regional cargos to foreign countries and enhancing the sustainable socio-economic development of the Mekong Delta.

More than VND 360 trillion is invested in the Vietnam’s sea port system.

The Government’s strategic foresight for the Vietnam’s up-to 2030 sea port system has come out.

The development planning of Vietnam’s up-to 2020 and 2030-bound sea port system has been approved by the Prime Minister. The total investment capital for the Vietnam’s up-to 2020 sea port planning wins approximately VND 360-440 trillion.

The cargo throughput at the whole sea port systems is expected to be nearly 500-600 million tons per year in 2015 period; about 900-1.100 million ton per year in 2020 and 2.100 million tons per year in 2020 period.

In order to achieve these figures, it is, first of all, required to design some deep-water ports for international large vessels, especially Van Phong international transit port, Khanh Hoa as to accommodate 90.000 – 15.000 TEUs vessels. Simultaneously, it is, from now to 2015, required to prioritize the investment in the ports: Lach Huyen berth area of Hai Phong international gateway port project; the berth area of Nghi Son refinery and petrochemical project, etc.

Upon the sea port planning, the development of sea ports is based on the natural conditions, the need of regional economic growth and the interaction with the nearby sea ports, which helps design and develop necessary sea ports only, avoiding the uneconomical investment and erroneous performance of sea ports. This planning shall help limit the aforesaid inadequacies.

Based on the scale and function of sea port each, 39 sea ports located in various areas can be classified into 03 types: National general port, local port and specialized port.

The national general port includes all main ports in the Vietnam’s sea port system, namely the international transit port (Van Phon - Khanh Hoa), the international gateway ports (Hai Phong, Ba Ria - Vung Tau) and the regional main ports (Hon Gai - Quang Ninh, Nghe An, etc.).

For detail, Hai Phong port is defined to be a national general as well as international gateway port with various-functioned areas. Some specialized port berths such as Dinh Vu, Cai Lan, ect shall function as a satellite in Hai Phong port system.

In the Northern Center, Nghe An port is to be a national general as well as regional main port, of which Cua Lo, Son Duong and Vung Anh berths are to be the function berths. The cargo throughput is expected to be approximately 152 million tons in 2020.

Quy Nhon - Binh Dinh and Van Phong - Khanh Hoa ports are in chief service of the industrial zones and the transiting of oil products whilst Nha Trang port is to be gradually functioned as to be a main customer berth for marine tourism which is to be able to accommodate international cruise ships.

Can Tho port comprising the function berth areas such as Cai Cui, Tra Noc-O Mon, etc mainly export/import general cargos for 20.000 – 100.000DWT vessels.

Upon the planning, due to the significantly high investment capital for the sea port construction, it is required to mobilize all necessary sources local and abroad in order for the sea port development and encourage all economic constituents to take part in investing in this field, especially in the state-private form for large-scaled ports.

The planning shall help further the development on the advantage of a long shore line, serving local people and promoting Vietnam’s economic growth.

(By chinhphu.vn)

(Translated by Portcoast)


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