The municipal People’s Committee recently sent a report to PM Nguyen Xuan Phuc regarding the VND9.92 trillion (US$441 million) anti-tidal flooding project which has been under construction by the private firm Trung Nam Group since 2016.
The project, which aims to build six massive sluice gates along the Saigon River in order to control the worsening tidal flooding in the area of 570sq.km, with a population of 6.5 million people, was due to be completed in April 30 this year.
Trung Nam Group, however, ordered a full postponement of the project except maintenance in vulnerable areas on April 27. A capital shortage prompted the decision, according to the group, which claimed that the HCM City People’s Committee was yet to sign the disbursement report, stopping the BIDV bank from continuing to fund the project.
According to the company, the project was 72% complete as of July 31. The amount disbursed so far was VND4.84 trillion while the total workload completed was worth VND5.69 trillion. That means that the company has yet to receive VND850 billion for their finished workload.
Conflicting points of view between Trung Nam and the southern hub’s authorities led to the disbursement delay.
Vice Chairman of the municipal People’s Committee Tran Vinh Tuyen recently announced that the authorities would not take responsibility for the project’s bank loans.
Tuyen said that the project was built under the Build-Transfer model, and the city hence would only pay the investor when the project is fully completed.
The months-long unresolved conflict left the city authorities with no option other than to ask PM Phuc to hold a meeting between relevant parties, including the Ministries of Planning and Investment, Finance, and Construction and the State Bank of Vietnam to work out the best solution.