01:11 (GMT +7) - Sunday 18/11/2018

Vietnam Today

Cao Lanh Friendship Bridge opened to traffic

Released at: 15:47, 28/05/2018

Cao Lanh Friendship Bridge opened to traffic

Photo: Plo.vn

Cao Lanh Bridge and inter-connecting roads to directly benefit more than 5 million people in Mekong Delta region.

by Le Diem

Cao Lanh Bridge, a cable-stayed bridge funded by the Australian Government, has been opened to traffic in the Mekong Delta province of Dong Thap as a part of celebrations of 45 years of relations between the two countries.

An estimated 170,000 people will cross the bridge each day, built under a joint funding partnership between the Vietnamese Government, the Australian Government, and the Asian Development Bank (ADB), as part of the Central Mekong Delta Region Connectivity Project.

Deputy Prime Minister Trinh Dinh Dung, Australian Foreign Minister Julie Bishop, Minister for Transport Nguyen Van The, ADB Country Director Eric Sidgwick, Chairman of the Dong Thap Provincial People’s Committee Nguyen Van Duong, and senior officials from ministries and cities and provinces officiated the opening of the bridge, reflecting on its significance for boosting trade and agriculture in Vietnam.

Deputy Prime Minister Trinh Dinh Dung (L) and Australian Foreign Minister Julie Bishop at the event (Photo: VGP)

“In the years ahead, this bridge will be a crucial driver for development,” said Ms. Bishop. “It will better connect the region, supporting economic growth and food security. It will demonstrate new technical engineering solutions that can be incorporated into future infrastructure projects. It will support Vietnam in continuing its remarkable economic transformation. And it will stand as an enduring symbol of Australia and Vietnam’s ties, marking our 45th anniversary of relations and the signing of our new strategic partnership.” Australia’s grant of $160 million represented its largest aid activity in mainland Southeast Asia and one of its most significant investments in Vietnam since building the My Thuan Bridge in the Mekong Delta, which opened in 2000.

“Beyond the improvement of physical connectivity, the Central Mekong Delta Region Connectivity Project is expected to bring inclusive development to areas that are poorly connected to major population centers and improve access to basic social and health services,” said Mr. Sidgwick. Better connectivity will not only reduce travel time and cost for residents in the Mekong Delta cities and provinces of Can Tho, An Giang, and Dong Thap, but also bring more business opportunities and better living conditions. The Project will also improve connectivity to the Greater Mekong Sub-region Southern Coastal Corridor and the Cambodian and Thai highway networks.

Known as Vietnam’s “rice basket”, the Mekong Delta contributes up to 70 per cent of the country’s agricultural and fisheries exports. The opening of the bridge and interconnecting roads will facilitate trade opportunities for Vietnamese agriculture across the Greater Mekong Sub-region, promote private sector investment, support food security, and expand access by local people to vital social and health services.

The bridge spans 2.4 km across the Tien River, with a further 25.1 km of interconnecting roads. The project was managed by the Cuu Long Corporation for Investment Development and Project Management of Infrastructure (Cuu Long CIPM), with supervision and design contracted to CDM SMITH Inc. from the US, WSP from Finland, and the YOOSHIN Engineering Cooperation from South Korea.

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