The Ministry of Transport has urged the Vietnam Railways (VNR) to complete upgrading auxiliary facilities of the Vietnamese North-South railway project by the end of this year.
|The upgrade of the North-South railway is expected to improve the performance of Vietnam railway industry. Photo: Hoa Thang|
According to Deputy Minister of Transport Nguyen Ngoc Dong, these facilities, with an investment of VND7 trillion (US$304.3 million) funded by the state budget, include the reapair of weak bridges along the railway route, the upgrading of essential infrastructure on the Hanoi-Vinh and Nha Trang-Ho Chi Minh City sections and the expansion of stations on Vinh-Nha Trang route.
Dong said as the North-South railway has been in operation for more than 100 years, its out-of-date infrastructure has prevented trains from running faster.
"The implementation of these projects has become urgent in order to ensure safety. The upgrade of the North-South railway is expected to improve short-distance cargo and passenger transport, then raise the industry’s revenue," he added.
The railway industry is forecast to continue facing challenging time in 2021. The Covid-19 pandemic has thwarted a plan to restore the railway sector as it outbroke at the peak traffic times in the summer and Tet holiday.
In 2020, the VNR estimated a loss of VND3.2 trillion (US$139 million) in equity in its two subsidiaries, Hanoi Railway Transport and Saigon Railway Transport, due to the shortage of guests, according to VNR’s Chairman Vu Anh Minh.
A plan to restructure the VNR in terms of finance, investment, human resources and technology and services, which was submitted almost three years ago for approval, is still "pending", according to the VNR.