Image: Hai Phong
One of the most exciting ventures a country and its cities can undergo is that of modernizing and redeveloping its buildings. The progress made is almost always positive, and literally can give cities a new face. Major infrastructure projects in Vietnam are not so slowly transforming the city for the better, upgrading various aspects ranging from transportation to water treatment and infrastructure. The country is looking at quite the improvement, to say the least.
When Vietnam’s prime minister Nguyen Xuân Phúc initially announced the plan, there was a lot of excitement but enthusiasm grew even higher further on, when the budget allocated for such project was revealed. Overall the Vietnamese government pledged to invest $921 million starting now all the way to 2020. The generous amount calls for an equally generous redevelopment, and that is exactly what Vietnam has in mind.
The various projects will be mainly implemented through the coastal areas and the industrial parks, so to attract private investors to the spaces. By revamping these areas, the hope is to not only to increase the economical competition level with neighboring countries in South East Asia but also to make the country more efficient and eco-friendly. For example, some of the first ideas presented include: the need for new drainage systems and water waste management; updates to the resettlement camp and the construction of new roads and connections that span over 250 kilometers. The overall investments will be concentrated in 8 specific zones, and are all located on the coast.
With so much growth expectations, Vietnam is already showing positive results. Examples of well-executed projects can be seen in the improvements done to the railway connecting Ho Chi Minh City and Hanoi, modernizing the roads in Vietnam (of which only 20% were paved), and also the building of electricity plants that serve energy for Vietnam’s largest cities. Thanks to the steady progress, Vietnam’s position on various lists is also something to notice. In the 2016-2017 World Economic Global Competitiveness Report, Vietnam placed 79th of 138 countries in terms of infrastructure quality, 77th for its quality in ports, and 89th for its roads. The numbers and rankings are positive, and are a testament to Vietnam’s dedication to its redevelopment. A further detail to the infrastructure project was given with the most recent Global Infrastructure Outlook: the report showed that if Vietnam continues on this positive stride of investing, the country will meet 83% of its goals by 2040.
Nevertheless in order to get there, Vietnam will need to spend $605 billion – quite the amount seeing how the current budget is $503 billion. Although the numbers are ambitious, Vietnam is set on meeting its goals. With different sectors (roads, energy, water management, telecommunications) that have most of the project’s attention, the investment amounts have already been covered – with the exception of the roads that are still missing a little less than half of the $134 billion destined to them.