Vietnam's railway sector is struggling to cope with increasing challenges as it awaits a new restructuring plan.
A traincrosses Hai Van Pass in the central region of Viet Nam.
The Vietnam Railway Corporation (VNR) was formed in 2003 as part of the reorganisation of the Vietnam Railway Federation.
In 2013, it implemented its restructuring plan's Phase 1, focusing on equitisation of its member companies, particularly Hanoi Railway Transportation and Sài Gòn Railway Transportation.
However, after being equitised, the two companies did not operate as effectively as expected, resulting in a reduced market share of the railway sector.
The railway sector in Việt Nam is now seen to be failing to compete with other ground transportation methods and airlines.
Vice head of Vietnam Railway Authority under the Ministry of Transport Nguyen Huy Hien said that VNR's current plan has faults which need to be fixed in the new one.
In 2017, the corporation proposed a new plan for the period 2016-2020.
Chairman Vũ Anh Minh said that after 41 months, the draft plan was still waiting for Government approval.
Meanwhile, last year, the Vietnam Railways Corporation suffered a record loss of VNĐ1.32 trillion (US$57.4 million) in revenue due to the COVID-19 pandemic and flooding in the central region.
Revenue last year dropped 21.7 per cent to VNĐ6.56 trillion ($284.5 million).
The railway sector was falling into a bigger crisis, Minh said, as he called for the Government to allow it to implement urgent restructuring actions this year.
VNR plan to merge the two joint stocks companies – Hanoi Railway Transportation and Saigon Railway Transportation and make full use of its available resources to reduce operation costs, then reduce transportation prices.
After the merging, VNR would focus on passenger transportation. It would establish a subsidiary operating in freight, Minh said.
The Commission for the Management of State Capital at Enterprises has also recommended merging the two companies. It also recommended establishing a Centre for Sciences, Technology and Services after re-organising VNR's units.
The commission suggested VNR divest its capital at its 13 member companies.
According to Deputy Minister of Transport Nguyen Ngoc Dong, over the past decade, the railway sector failed to mobilise resources for development. Meanwhile, the investment in the sector had increased slightly by VNĐ4-4.5 trillion, mainly for infrastructure maintenance and social welfare but not for development.
Đông also said it would be difficult to eliminate the problems facing the sector in a short time.
At a meeting on VNR's restructuring plan earlier this year, Deputy Prime Minister Truong Hoa Bình said that the corporation must focus on simplifying its organisation, address overlapping among sections and speed up information technology and advanced railway technology.
The corporation must increase its ability to master in making carriages, locomotives and reduce reliance on foreign supply and transportation costs, Bình said.
He also asked for an upgrade of cross-border railways to boost international transportation.
Professor and Dr Bui Xuan Phong, chairman of Vietnam Railway and Economy Association said that the merging of the two companies, Hanoi Railway Transportation Station and Sai Gon Railway Transportation, could lead to a compatible system for organisation and operation the railway from the north to the south in terms of staff and facilities like locomotives, carriages or warning systems.
"Among the factors to boost the railway sector, Government's investment to railway infrastructure is needed first," he said.
Professor and Dr Dang Dinh Dao, former chairman of Institution for Economic and Development Studies under National Economies University said that for a long time, the railway sector survived with few infrastructure improvements.
"Once the railway sector is striving to change, it requires a huge investment. This poses a difficulty for the Government to arrange," he said.
In the past, Vietnam paid more attention to develop its roads rather than railway and waterways, Dao said, adding that the imbalance in investment led to high logistic costs and reduced the country's competitiveness.
"A plan to increase investment is needed, particularly a high-speed railway system," Dao said, adding that elsewhere in the world, in places like Japan or China, the railway was a proven effective form of transportation. — VNS
- Retail premises segment struggles to wait for end of Covid-19 pandemic
- Nissan restructuring may assume cut of 1 million cars to annual sales target -sources
- Could Macy's, Gap and Kohl's collapse? Iconic retailers are struggling to survive during 'catastrophic' virus crisis worse than the 2008 financial crash with '15,000 stores to close for good'
- My wedding's off and now I'm planning a proper party! Like so many brides, bra tycoon Michelle Mone's big day has been cancelled but she's not complaining about the delay
- Suspension of rail services essential to contain coronavirus spread: Railway official
- Priyanka Gandhi Vadra asks Centre to probe role of Railways Ministry for migrant crisis
- Women Are Trying to Survive COVID-19. Politicians Are Trying to Take Away Their Care
- Can dentists survive when the lockdown starts to bite? Shocking report reveals a fifth of practices may close within weeks without a government cash lifeline
- TV chef Sally Bee, 52, who survived FIVE heart attacks reveals she's lived in fear of dying long before Covid-19 - and shares her tips for staying positive
- Germany sees less than 4,000 new coronavirus infections for a second day in growing sign the country has flattened the Covid-19 curve
- Artists are struggling to find inspiration in isolation
- Coronavirus death toll in China hits 41 as medical staff struggle to cope
Railway struggling to survive, waiting for a new restructuring plan have 905 words, post on vietnamnet.vn at March 21, 2021. This is cached page on VietNam Breaking News. If you want remove this page, please contact us.