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Tuesday, August 3, 2021

Transport operators oppose toll fee hike proposal

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HCMC – Many transport operators have voiced their objections to the Ministry of Transport’s proposal to increase the toll fees for some build-operate-transfer (BOT) road projects, insisting that the fee hike in the current climate is unreasonable.

Nguyen Van Quyen, chairman of the Vietnam Automobile Transport Association, stated that as many transport firms are facing difficulties caused by the coronavirus pandemic, it is unfeasible to hike the toll fees at this time.

These transport companies have just resumed operations as the pandemic has been brought under control, so the volume of goods and customers remains low, leading to a low frequency of transportation, the local media reported.

As such, the Ministry of Transport should carefully consider proposals to raise the fees across multiple BOT road projects during a time of hardship, he remarked.

Echoing the view, Khuc Huu Thanh Hai, director of Dat Cang Transportation Trading and Services JSC in Haiphong City, noted that the low frequency of transportation and the decline in customers have affected transport companies heavily, while toll fees for BOT road projects and road maintenance fees are burdening them in addition to the hardships triggered by Covid-19.

If the fees are raised to support investors in BOT projects, other firms active in various fields will also be affected heavily, Hai stressed.

He added that the fees for BOT road projects account for a large proportion of transport costs, at some 40%.

At this time, the State should not raise these fees, he said, suggesting a fee hike when transport operations rebound and the country’s economy recovers fully.

Earlier, the Ministry of Transport proposed the Government increase the toll fees for some BOT road projects to help the investors in these projects who have been affected by Covid-19 and reported a sharp drop in revenues.

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