LookAtVietnam – The HCM City Cargo Transport Association has lodged a complaint to the Prime Minister, Minister of Transport and Minister of Finance over the high toll on HCM City – Trung Luong expressway.
A completely deserted toll station on the HCM City-Trung Luong expressway.
The association said that it had received complaints from many cargo transporters about the tolls.
According to the association, trucks of over 10 tonnes are the main vehicles used by transport companies to transport goods from HCM City to provinces and the Mekong Delta and vice versa.
The current toll on trucks of over 18 tonnes is VND8,000 per one kilometer, so transporters have to pay up to VND640,000 ($30.5) for a trip. The toll is too high compared to profit earned by transporters, which is estimated at VND300,000-400,000 ($14-19) for a trip within a 100km diameter. If transporters do not raise charges by at least 20 percent, profit will be not enough to pay the toll.
The association’s Vice Chair Luong Hoang Trung said that the association asked the state to cut down the toll by a half and to not place toll stations on National Highway 1A, which also links HCM City to the Mekong Delta.
According to the association, it is unreasonable to place toll stations on this road to collect tolls in order to compensate for the investment in the HCM City-Trung Luong expressway.
Heavy trucks have switched to traveling on National Highway 1A instead of the HCM City -Trung Luong Expressway, after the road management unit officially started toll collection on February 26.
Tran Hue Ninh, director of the HCM City – Trung Luong Expressway management center, admitted the number of vehicles traveling on the expressway declined on the first toll collection day. Previously, the expressway saw some 30,000 vehicles of all kinds passing every day.
Regarding this situation, Duong Tuan Minh, general director of Cuu Long Corporation for Investment, Development and Project Management of Infrastructure, said the Government had approved for the project owner to develop another toll station on the National Highway 1A section in Long An Province, to assist toll collection of HCM City -Trung Luong Expressway and regulate traffic flow between the expressway and National Highway 1A.
Under the toll collection process, vehicles entering the expressway must stop at the toll stations to receive a card served as tickets, which will be later submitted before drivers leave the expressway for calculating the toll fees based on the length of travel.