mai hien

Thursday, 28 February 2019 02:30
After seven years of delay due to economic difficulties, Gemalink Cai Mep Deep Water Port, which is developed by Terminal Link Cai Mep Terminal JSC, a joint venture between Gemadept Corporation and France-based container shipping giant CMA CGM, was resumed.

On February 20, Gemadept Corporation organised the ground-breaking ceremony for Gemalink Cai Mep port, Vietnam’s largest deep water port.

Accordingly, the port has a total investment capital of $520 million with the first phase of $330 million. The port spans an area of 72 hectares and has an annual capacity of 2.4 million twenty-foot equivalent units (TEU) in order to receive the world’s largest ships.

Do Van Minh, the company’s chairman, said that as soon as the project completes its first phase, Gemalink would double the container loading capacity at Gemadept’s seaports and complete its service chain nationwide.

Previously, Gemadept and CMA CGM established a joint venture with the charter capital of $120 million to develop the project with Gemadept holding 75 per cent. Construction started in 2010, however, it had to halt two years later due to economic difficulties. 

In 2017, the corporation was restructured by selling shares in some member companies to prioritise restarting the project.

Founded in 1990, Gemadept was one of the first firms to be equitised and listed on the public market.

In the next few years, Gemadept has set out a list of ambitious goals for expansion in both Vietnam and overseas. Areas of focus include the development of Nam Dinh Vu port in the northern province of Haiphong.

Besides, Gemadept will continue expanding its port, logistics, warehouse, transportation, and air cargo services to create a complete 3PL logistics and port system.

Along with plans to develop new ports, in July 2018, Gemadept finalised the sale of its 51 per cent stake in the company to an undisclosed South Korean buyer. The transaction’s value was not disclosed, but it is estimated at over VND104 billion ($4.6 million).

Tuesday, 19 February 2019 01:59

Large shipping lines have continuously increased their feeder size to cut costs on each container, which means a draught (the boat is submerged in water) and the overall length of the vessel is also increased. Therefore, downstream ports with deeper flows and larger turning basin will have a significant advantage over upstream ports.


The deep-water port cluster in Cai Mep - Thi Vai (Vung Tau) is expected to become an important container gate in the southern region. After a long time with low performance, in fact, container volume in 2017 in this area has tripled compared to 2011 and reached 2.4 million tons, accounting for about 20% of Vietnam's container volume. .


With the characteristics of a deep-water port cluster, this area has the advantage of being able to receive large vessels up to 200,000 DWT. In the trend of firms always want to use large size vessels to transport goods. Demand in this region will be positive in the next few years.

Besides, the US-China trade war can help Vietnam increase its ability to gain market share from China as a production center due to its relatively cheap labor force, stable political environment and major Open trade books.



Meanwhile, Vietnam's export value for goods that China has been taxed (wood, textiles and footwear) grew at a higher rate than every year. This trend may boost the demand for international shipping to Vietnam, thus increasing the amount of container throughput because these products are mainly transported by sea.


The Ministry of Transport has issued Circular 54/2018 / TT-BGTVT, thereby adjusting the price frame for a range of services at Vietnamese seaports, including container loading and unloading services. The circular will officially take effect in 2019. Accordingly, the new floor price will be 10% higher than the current floor price (equal to the market price due to oversupply) for the northern ports ( not including HICT in Lach Huyen).


This will help to increase the income of downstream ports in Hai Phong by breaking down the service price trend due to the tough competition in this area. In the South, the frame remains the same, except for the terminals in Cai Mep - Thi Vai (up 13% per TEU).


However, FDI inflows are slowing down. Too much reliance on FDI will put the economy at risk if the activities of FDI enterprises become stagnant. At the same time, the problem of oversupply in Hai Phong may lead to port operators not fully benefiting from the lifting of container handling rates.


In addition, delay dredging activities lead to unsecured channel depth, leading to a reduction in cargo throughput.

Thursday, 14 February 2019 02:22

THE Singapore-flagged 9,600-TEU APL Vancouver has been hit by fire on its on cargo deck as the ship was en route from Shenzhen to Singapore and had to head into to Vietnamese waters.

It sailed into obscure Vung Ro Bay in Phu Yen Province, where the Vietnamese Coast Guard organised fire fighting operations. It is understood that a salvage company has already been contracted.

Now a unit of French shipping giant CMA CGM, APL, the operator of the ship, reported that fire broke out in one of the cargo holds about 4.30am January 31, whereupon emergency response procedures were activated by the crew.

All 24 crewmen were reportedly in good health, and no pollution has been reported.

The International Union of Marine Insurance (IUMI) has warned that the design and fire fighting arrangements of modern container ships can make cargo fires difficult to address, noted Fort Lauderdale's Maritime Executive.

"Once established, a fire can be virtually impossible to get under control," asserted Nick Haslam, group director of shipping services for LOC, in a recent post for IUMI.

"This is because of a combination of factors; restricted access to the cargo stow where many of the fires have started and the sheer size and scale of an ultra large container vessel (ULCV), together with inadequate crew training and equipment."

Thursday, 24 January 2019 04:22

Hanoi’s Urban Transport Master Plan until 2030 with a vision to 2050 outlines the development for a core urban zone and additional satellite cities.

The metro system is the backbone of the plan as it connects the inner zone to satellite cities, as well as other modes of public transport like buses.

According to the plan, the Hanoi metro system will run a total length of 417km, of which approximately 76km will be underground. The planned lines are as follows:

Line 1

Ngoc Hoi – Yen Vien – Nhu Quynh, with two sections: Ngoc Hoi – Yen Vien and Gia Lam – Dương Xá.

Line 2

Noi Bai – Thuong Dinh – Buoi, with further sections: Nam Thang Long – Tran Hung Dao; Tran Hung Dao - Thuong Dinh; Thuong Dinh - Belt Road 2 – Buoi; Noi Bai – Thăng Long; and an extension of Line 2 to Soc Son District.

Line 2A

Cat Linh – Ha Dong - Xuan Mai, with sections: Cat Linh – Ha Dong, and an extension of the Xuan Mai section.

Line 3

Troi – Nhon – Yen So, with sections: Nhon – Hanoi Railway Station; Troi – Nhon; Hanoi Railway Station – Yen So – Hoang Mai; and an extension to Son Tay Town.

Line 4

Me Linh – Sai Dong – Lien Ha

Line 5

Văn Cao – Hoa Lac, with two sections: Van Cao – Belt Road 4 and Belt Road 4 – Hoa Lac

Line 6

Noi Bai – Ngoc Hoi

Line 7

Me Linh – Ha Dong

Line 8

Son Dong – Mai Dich – Duong Xa, including two sections: Son Dong – Mai Dich and Mai Dich – Belt Road 3 – Dương Xa

Additional line

Son Tay – Hoa Lac – Xuan Mai Route, connecting to satellite urban areas.

According to the plan, nine sections of four lines will be in operation by 2025. Line 2A (Cat Linh – Ha Dong) is operating test rides and is expected to be in operation in 2019. Line 3 (Nhon – Hanoi Railway Station) is accelerating construction and is expected to open the elevated section by 2020, with the remainder of the line operational by 2022. Line 2 (Tran Hung Dao – Nam Thang Long) still needs design approval and investment.

With an annual growth rate of 7 per cent, Vietnam is one of the fastest-growing economies in Asia. Vietnam’s cities are also experiencing rapid growth. It is expected that 50 per cent of the population will live in urban areas by 2025. As the country’s capital, the city needs to develop a transportation infrastructure accordingly.

Currently, public transport in Hanoi consists of only buses and taxis. There are two types of buses, regular buses and BRT buses. Once completed, this metro system, together with the current bus system, will be the backbone of the city’s public transport network.



Thursday, 17 January 2019 01:58

Despite recent positive signals, the road for foreign investors to acquire expressway concessions in Vietnam remains long due to the lack of legal framework, hindering interested investors. Tung Anh reports.

A few days ago, Japan’s Index Consulting and its partners – Deloitte, Nishimura & Asahi, and Padeco – worked with the Ministry of Transport (MoT) on the results of a one-year study about possibilities of transferring the operation right of the Ho Chi Minh City-Long Thanh-Dau Giay Expressway.

Developed by state-owned Vietnam Expressway Corporation (VEC), the country’s largest expressway developer, the route in question is the first studied expressway concession project in Vietnam.

With support from the Japan International Co-operation Agency (JICA), the study is expected to help potential Japanese funders learn about the investment opportunities of the life-line 55-kilometre highway located in the country’s south-eastern region.


Mai Tuan Anh, chairman of VEC, saw the results as a positive signal for the project as the study proves their capacity to return loans as scheduled, while having the funding to develop new projects.

Index Consulting proposes 30 years for the two concession schemes for the route, with the first to keep the four existing lanes, thus concession value is estimated at $796 million. In the second scheme, if the expressway is expanded to six lanes by 2020, the concession value will be over $1 billion.

The VEC representative said that Index Consulting favours the second scheme as with current transport growth, the expressway will likely be overloaded in the next five to seven years, thus enabling VEC to return its loans to JICA and the Asian Development Bank (ADB) as scheduled by 2032.

At present, the Ho Chi Minh City-Long Thanh-Dau Giay route is among the busiest highways built by VEC. With the total investment of VND20.63 trillion ($896.96 million) sourced from JICA and ADB loans for the first phase, the route has served over 45 million vehicles after over three years of operation.

While the study result is said to be a good signal for VEC and other interested overseas interested investors, some legal barriers in the process remain.

In September 2016, VEC signed a co-operation agreement with France’s Vinci Concessions, with transfer of the right to operate expressways developed by VEC being among the three main parts. The Ho Chi Minh City-Long Thanh-Dau Giay and the Cau Gie-Ninh Binh routes – among VEC’s most trafficked expressways – were their targets. However, the plan has so far hit a snag due to the lack of a legal framework, with expressway concession being new to Vietnam.

“VEC is developing and operating five expressways under a loan package. The group must collect tolls to pay its debts. Thus, the corporation cannot separate the roads to sell the operation rights of two to Vinci,” an MoT official told VIR.

“We need a detailed legal framework for expressway concessions. For example, in the scheme the investor wants to expand in the future, it is necessary to have a risk allocation mechanism, particular for site clearance, between the state and the investor. The other is price fixing among other things,” he said.

The other barrier is that VEC is waiting for the Politburo’s approval of the scheme on financial restructuring for its five expressways. Thus, concessions and the mechanism for them will be considered when approval is made.

Moreover, VEC is now in the process to transfer to the State Capital Management Committee. There are still some concerns about the overlap in management between the committee and the MoT which is now managing the corporation.


- The Ho Chi Minh City-Long Thanh-Dau Day Expressway has an economic efficiency equivalent to over VND3 trillion ($130.4 million), higher than the average figure of the eastern component projects of the North-South Expressway at about VND1.4 trillion ($60.9 million).

- Established in 1994, Tokyo-based Index Consulting has a list of 100 clients, including GE Japan Corporation, Mitsubishi Motors Corporation, Mizuho Trust & Banking Co., Ltd., Morgan Stanley Group, Nippon Steel & Sumikin Engineering Co., Ltd., Tokyu Land Corporation, Tokyu Real Estate Investment Management Inc., and Unilever Japan K.K.

The Index Consulting study is expected to be a good foundation to take next steps. However, VEC and interested investors can do nothing but wait for improvements in the legal framework.

Currently, VEC is the investor of five expressway projects with a total investment capital of $6 billion, spanning over 500km in total. Of these, four are already open to traffic, including the Cau Gie-Ninh Binh, Ho Chi Minh City-Long Thanh-Dau Giay, the 245-kilometre Noi Bai-Lao Cai, and the Danang-Quang Ngai routes. The Ben Luc-Long Thanh route will be completed in 2020.

The expressway developer said that in the first nine months of 2018, the number of vehicles served by its expressways grew by 11 per cent on-year to 30.5 million. Of the five, the Cau Gie-Ninh Binh Expressway reported the highest growth with 17 per cent and 11.4 million vehicles. The runner-up was Ho Chi Minh City-Long Thanh-Dau Giay Expressway with 11 million vehicles, while 7.4 million were served by Noi Bai-Lao Cai Expressway, up more than 12 per cent.

VEC aims to continue investing a total of VND80 trillion ($3.87 billion) in building 500km of expressways in the 2016-2020 period, thus creating opportunities for funders to join.

Expressway concession is one among the most interested business segments in the transport sector. Over recent years, besides Vinci, many international groups, including KEC, NEXCO, POSCO, and Doosan, and others from the likes of Spain and the US have expressed interest in co-operating with VEC on expressway operations.

Mori Masafumi, deputy head of the Japanese Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism, said that many infrastructure investors in Japan are strongly interested in the transfer of operation rights.

He noted that the Japanese government and his ministry will continue providing support to make the concession of Ho Chi Minh City-Long Thanh-Dau Giay Expresway successful.

With no new concession deals signed yet, the international consortium led by Indian infrastructure company IL&FS remains the first foreign investor to ink such a deal after it successfully signed an agreement in 2014 with Vietnam Infrastructure Development and Finance Investment Company to acquire the right to collect tolls on Hanoi-Haiphong Expressway.

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