Vietnam News

Japan signs another $288M loan for HCMC metro line

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Vietnam and Japan signed the fourth loan agreement for Ho Chi Minh City’s metro line No.1 project, worth more than JPY41 billion (US$288.48 million), on Saturday.

Vietnamese Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh and his Japanese counterpart Kishida Fumio witnessed the exchange of cooperation documents between the two countries in Tokyo, which involved the HCMC’s metro line, the Japan Development Scholarship (JDS) project, and the equipment supply project for Vietnam’s K Hospital with a total sum of JPY42.3 billion.

The metro line loan agreement was signed under the Special Terms for Economic Partnership (STEP), a type of Japanese ODA granted to projects that can benefit from the best use of advanced technologies and know-how of Japanese firms. These projects are required to use Japanese as the main contracts or as the lead of the contractor joint venture and at least 30% of the materials used need to be from Japan.

Japan’s previous loan agreements for the project were signed in 2007, 2012 and 2016, worth JPY155.3 billion ($1.09 billion).

HCMC’s metro line No. 1, also known as the Ben Thanh – Suoi Tien line, is to run 19.7 km between Ben Thanh Market in downtown HCMC to Long Binh Depot in Thu Duc City.

The line is now 97% completed after many delays since work started in 2012.

At a total cost of over VND43.7 trillion ($1.85 billion), it will include three underground stations and 11 elevated ones.

The project is expected to be finished this year and begin commercial operations in 2024.

Japan is Vietnam’s top ODA partner. By the end of the 2020 fiscal year, the East Asian economic powerhouse had lent Vietnam a total of JPY2,821.2 billion ($27.5 billion) in ODA.

PM Chinh is in Japan as part of his trip to attend the Commemorative Summit for the 50th Year of ASEAN-Japan Friendship and Cooperation and have bilateral activities in the country.

By Quynh Trang – – December 16, 2023

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