Vietnam mulls privatising airports

Vietnam's Civil Aviation Administration has proposed the transport ministry allow foreign companies to invest in or manage "second-class" airports.

VietJetAir became Vietnam’s first private airline to open an international route on Feb 10, flying from Ho Chi Minh City to Bangkok. Vietnam's Civil Aviation Administration has proposed the transport ministry allow foreign companies to invest in or manage "second-class" airports.

The country needs 221 trillion dong (306 billion baht) to improve 26 airports across the country. This proposal would lower the financial burden on the government,  Lai Xuan Thanh, chief of the aviation agency, said.

"It's necessary for assistance from international investors with modern technology, experienced administrative management, and strong financial resources," he told Vietnam News.

The agency recommended the state control key airports including Noi Bai in Hanoi, Da Nang, Tan Son Nhat in Ho Chi Minh City, Long Thanh in Dong Nai province, Cam Ranh, and Na San.

"Second class airports", including Hue, Can Tho, Da Lat and Nha Trang could be opened to foreign investment, he said.

"As for those in the second class, we suggest privatisation, or allowing investors to invest and operate," he added.

The operators of Changi Airport in Singapore are reportedly interested in managing Hue airport.

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