Investors willing to spend billions of USD to build airports in Vietnam

Van Don International Airport, invested by the Sun Group.

The door has still not opened widely to private investors who want to develop airports.

The Ministry of Transport (MOT) on November 7 signed a decision approving the VND5.903 trillion plan on adjusting Sa Pa Airport development in Lao Cai province. This will be a domestic airport used for both civil and military purposes, with capacity of 3 million passengers a year.

In July 2019, at a working session with Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc, the province proposed to Phuc to approve the PPP (private public partnership) investment mode. If PPP is implemented, the central budget would provide VND3.088 trillion, while VND910.6 billion would be from the local budget. The Vietnam Air Traffic Management Corporation (VATM) would invest VND131 billion. Meanwhile, VND1.772 trillion would be from private investors.

Under Decision No 236 approved by the Prime Minister earlier this year, from now to 2030, Vietnam would have 28 airports, including 15 national and 13 international airports.

Minister of Transport Nguyen Van The said other airports including Lai Chau and Na San also need private investments.

Vietnam now has 22 airports. Except Van Don, developed by private investors, the other 21 airports are put under the management of the Airports Corporation of Vietnam (ACV).

As such, Vietnam would have at least six new airports in the next 10 years. Meanwhile, a series of projects on upgrading airports have been proposed with total required investment capital of billions of dollars.

Analysts said that as the state budget is limited and warnings about high public debts have been given, capital from private sources proves to be the most feasible solution.

“In the aviation sector, we are willing to invite private investors. As for Dien Bien Airport, in case ACV cannot invest, we will use private investments to upgrade Dien Bien,” The said at the Private Economic Forum held last May.

Many provinces have asked for permission to develop airports in their localities with private investments. Rang Dong JSC has been chosen by Binh Thuan provincial authorities as the investor of Phan Thiet Airport, capitalized at VND10.272 trillion in the first phase.

The joint name of Van Phu Invest and VCI are seeking permission to invest in Go Gang Airport in Vung Tau, capitalized at $1 billion. Meanwhile, Loc An Airport would be developed by Ho Tram Project Co Ltd with the investment capital of VND4.25 trillion.

Vietjet, a private air carrier, expressed its willingness to implement Dien Bien and Cat Bi expansion projects, but it has not received approval. Quang Binh provincial authorities have proposed that MOT accept FLC to upgrade Dong Hoi Airport.

Source: VNN – By: Ngoc Ha

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