Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Vietnam to develop northern economic corridor

HANOI, July 15 (Xinhua) -- The Vietnamese government has approved a plan on fostering its economic corridor involving Hanoi capital, Hai Phong city, and Lang Son and Quang Ninh provinces by 2020 to mainly boost exports to China, Europe and Southeast Asia, according to local newspaper Pioneer on Tuesday.

Under the plan, economic growth of the northern economic corridor will be 1.2-1.4 times that of Vietnam, and import-exports via the corridor will grow over 20 percent annually, reaching some2 billion U.S. dollars in 2010, 4.5-5.0 billion dollars in 2015 and more than 10 billion dollars in 2020.

Vietnam will pour some 1.4 billion dollars into building a six-lane expressway linking Hanoi and Lang Son bordering China. Construction of another six-lane expressway stretching from the capital city to Hai Phong with investment of nearly 1.2 billion dollars is expected to start in 2008 and finish in 2010.

Construction of a deepwater seaport named Lach Huyen in Hai Phong will also be scheduled to begin this year. It will be capable of handling 25 million tons of cargoes in 2010 and 40 million tons in 2020.

Under the plan, there will be three international border gates,13 border markets and some trade and tourism centers along the Vietnam-China borders.

In May 2004, the governments of Vietnam and China agreed to develop two international economic corridors involving such Vietnamese and Chinese localities as Kunming-Lao Cai-Hanoi-Hai Phong and Nanning-Lang Son-Hanoi-Hai Phong, and the Beibu Gulf economic belt involving China's Guangxi, Guangdong, Hainan, Hong Kong and Macao, and 10 coastal localities of Vietnam, to accelerate socioeconomic development of the involved cities and provinces, as well as their trade and economic ties with the Association of Southeast Asian Nations.