ADB is helping Viet Nam upgrade 304 kilometers of roads in six remote northern provinces with high rates of poverty and large ethnic minority communities. The project will also develop climate proofing measures in the design of road rehabilitation works, provide jobs during construction, and help mitigate negative social impacts along the improved roads, including the spread of diseases.
|Project Name||Transport Connections in Northern Mountainous Provinces Project|
|Project Type / Modality of Assistance||Grant
|Source of Funding / Amount||
|Strategic Agendas||Environmentally sustainable growth
Inclusive economic growth
|Drivers of Change||Gender Equity and Mainstreaming
Governance and capacity development
|Sector / Subsector||
Transport / Road transport (non-urban)
|Gender Equity and Mainstreaming||Effective gender mainstreaming|
|Description||Under the project, about 304 kilometers (km) of provincial roads in six northern mountainous provinces of Viet Nam will be rehabilitated. These provinces have high rates of poverty and large ethnic minority populations. The road network consists predominantly of mountainous, unpaved, narrow roads, and many sections are impassable during the rainy season. Project roads have been selected through project preparatory technical assistance (TA) based on social and economic indicators to maximize development benefits and impacts. The time and cost of traveling from mountainous remote areas to social infrastructure will be reduced, and the economic activities along the roads will be increased. The project is consistent with the strategic priorities of the country strategy and program, which emphasizes investments in infrastructure development for pro-poor economic growth.|
|Project Rationale and Linkage to Country/Regional Strategy||
The northern mountainous provinces of Viet Nam have developed at a much slower pace than the rest of the country. The project area had 30% of the population living in poverty in 2009, which is far above the 11% average for the country. Gross domestic product per capita in the northern mountainous provinces was $400 in 2008, compared to the national average of $1,070. Ethnic minorities typically inhabit the more mountainous and less accessible areas of the provinces, and account for 69% of the project area's population. The income level of ethnic minorities is below average. Women are involved mainly in agricultural activities, and transport their products to sell in local markets. Poor access to markets as well as to health, education, and other government services is a major constraint on socioeconomic development.
The government recognizes that development of the northern region of Viet Nam has lagged behind the rest of the country. The government's socioeconomic development plan identifies lack of rural infrastructure in the region as a constraint on effective poverty reduction. In support of government efforts to meet poverty reduction objectives, the country strategy and program of the Asian Development Bank (ADB) supports initiatives targeted at the northern mountainous region to address the high levels of general and food poverty. Planned improvements along the Greater Mekong Subregion (GMS) corridors are also expected to bring increased economic and employment opportunities to the region. The project areas have strong demographic and economic relations with the cities that will be connected by the GMS Noi Bai Lao Cai Highway and the GMS Ha Noi Lang Son Expressway, and the project will improve the connection between mountainous rural communities and the GMS corridors and major national highways.
Road travel is the dominant transport mode in Viet Nam. The road network comprises more than 256,000 km, of which the vast majority (216,000 km) are provincial and local roads. These are mostly in poor condition about 52% of the network is unpaved, and about 16% of local population does not have access to an all-season road. Unpaved roads often become impassable during the rainy season, and ordinary automobiles cannot pass along the project roads for 140 days in a year. The poor road conditions contribute to accidents as well as pavement damage due to vehicle overloading. The condition of the roads discourages investments in the region, making it difficult for agricultural production to expand beyond subsistence farming, or for other industries to develop.
Road maintenance in Viet Nam is less than optimal, mainly due to insufficient budget and low capacity of operation and maintenance companies. The Ministry of Transport (MOT) defines road maintenance activities as regular maintenance, periodical repair, and emergency repair. The National Assembly approved establishment of a road maintenance fund in November 2008. The fund was expected to provide more stable and sufficient budget for road maintenance but the government is facing difficulties securing sufficient revenue and has not yet formulated implementation details.
There is also a need to reduce the life-cycle cost of roads, including both development and maintenance costs, as funds to cover the large demand for both road rehabilitation and new roads are limited. ADB is providing policy and advisory TA for the MOT, which includes a component to develop design guidelines to allow flexible application of road classification. At present, the same road classification and corresponding design standards are usually applied from the beginning to the end points of a road, regardless of varying traffic demand and conditions of the road sections. Flexible application of road classification is expected to reduce life-cycle costs and improve sustainability of local roads. Some roads under the project will be designed based on guidelines to be developed through the TA.
Most of the project roads are in areas vulnerable to climate impacts, and the mountainous terrain (and, therefore, the local economy) is prone to natural disaster risks. Frequent flash floods and road closures have negative economic and social impacts on road users and residents, and these impacts are expected to increase due to climate change. The government approved the National Target Program to respond to climate change in 2008. The MOT approved its action plan toward the National Target Program for seven subsectors including road transport in 2011. Provincial people's committees (PPCs) are preparing local action plans based on the National Target Program. However, past and current assistance focuses more on coastal areas than the northern mountainous provinces.
The role of local governments in developing and managing local roads is becoming increasingly important as the government decentralized the responsibilities for implementation of official development assistance programs to provincial governments by a decree in 2006. The project will be implemented directly by the PPCs, unlike previous projects where the MOT acted as an executing agency. To efficiently coordinate and monitor implementation by six provincial project management units (PPMUs) under the PPCs, a joint coordination committee (JCC) has been established upon the Prime Minister's authorization. This direct implementation arrangement will enhance project ownership and encourage local government participation in implementation, but it imposes the need for some initial support for procurement, financial management, and other capacity building needs.
|Impact||Reduced poverty in the project areas|
|Description of Outcome||Improved and reliable road connectivity in the project areas with increased resilience to climate change|
|Progress Toward Outcome||All construction works, with climate change mitigation designs, have been completed by end of March 2017.|
|Description of Project Outputs||
Project roads are rehabilitated, including the sections for which (i) design guidelines developed through the policy and advisory TA are applied, and
(ii) climate-proofing measures developed through the grant component are applied.
Capacity of PPC staff on potential climate change impacts is enhanced.
Potential social problems among vulnerable people, especially women and ethnic minorities, are prevented and mitigated.
|Status of Implementation Progress (Outputs, Activities, and Issues)||
Due to underestimated costs at project design and continued price escalations since 2009, total length of road rehabilitated is 287.5 km against 304 km as anticipated.
By end of March 2017, the portion is 95%.
Flexible design guideline has been taken into account for all 12 project roads. Only PR 255 applied 2 road classes of V and IV.
Adaptation measures have been implemented in 6 provincial roads.
As of 30 June 2017,the GAEMPD implementation is on track. Out of 27 actions and 5 targets, 21 actions have been completed (77%) and 4 targets have been achieved (80%)
- A majority of contractors' representatives in charge of the civil work under projects were oriented on GAEMDP, especially on related GAP target.
- Among 854 participants of the training of facilitators, 480 (56.21% of the total) were women.
- Climate change adaptation training seminars was held during June 8th to 15, 2014 in Hai Phong with 58 participants and 25 of those are female (account for 43%).
The original climate change adaptation consulting services has been terminated. NDF cancelled the remaining Grant amount. JCC is considering using ADB Loan's savings to carry out remaining parts of this component.
|Geographical Location||Bac Kan, Bac Quang, Bao Lac, Bao Lam, Bao Yen, Cao Bang, Chiem Hoa, Cho Don, Ha Giang, Ham Yen, Lao Cai, Lao Cai City, Muong Khuong, Nguyen Binh, Quang Binh, Tran Yen, Tuyen Quang, Van Ban, Van Yen, Yen Bai, Yen Bai City, Yen Minh|
|Summary of Environmental and Social Aspects|
Results of the IEEs conducted for each province showed that the proposed road improvement works will result in minor environmental impacts. The biological environment is dominated by agriculture, production forests, and tree plantations around most stretches of the project roads. None of the project roads traverses buffer or core zones of ecologically or culturally protected areas.
The adverse environmental impacts will be largely experienced during construction due to spoil and waste disposal, traffic interruption, potential disruption of water and power supply utilities, and elevated levels of noise and dust. The works will be of short duration, causing only moderate disturbance to the surrounding areas provided the EMPs are fully implemented. The EMPs provide mitigation measures and monitoring activities to avoid or reduce anticipated negative project impacts.
|Involuntary Resettlement||Although about 4,700 households are affected by land acquisition, no households are losing 10% or more of their total productive assets. Impacts on structures are limited as houses and shops will be only partially affected. There will be no impacts on common property resources, and access to properties and economic opportunities will not be restricted during project construction and operation. Key information in the resettlement plans has been disclosed to the affected households through distribution of information leaflets in Vietnamese or local ethnic minority languages during market days in the communes prior to submission to ADB for review and concurrence.|
|Indigenous Peoples||The ethnic minorities in the remote areas, especially in those that are difficult to access by road during the rainy season, are particularly poor. Road improvement will greatly benefit the ethnic minority groups but there are also increased social risks. GAEMDPs for Bac Kan, Cao Bang, Ha Giang, Tuyen Quang, and Lao Cai provinces have been designed in a culturally and linguistically gender-responsive way. The plans will be translated into ethnic minority languages since a critical source of vulnerability among women from ethnic minority groups is language, which isolates these women and reduces income-generating opportunities. Data disaggregated by ethnic group will be collected during implementation and monitoring.|
|Stakeholder Communication, Participation, and Consultation|
|During Project Design|
|During Project Implementation|
Project Coordination Consulting Services: QCBS, 485 person-months, $5.23 million.
Project Auditing Consulting Services: QCBS, 156 person-months, $0.66 million.
Recruitment activities have been completed.
Civil works: National competitive bidding, 23 contracts, $78.04 million.
Equipment: Shopping, 1 contract, $0.04 million.
Procurement activities have been completed.
|Responsible ADB Officer||Nguyen Dinh Cuong|
|Responsible ADB Department||Southeast Asia Department|
|Responsible ADB Division||Viet Nam Resident Mission|
Transport Department of Bac Kan
Duc Xuan Ward - Bac Kan Town - Bac Kan Province Transport Department of Cao Bang
Hop Giang Ward - Cao Bang Town - Cao Bang Province Transport Department of Ha Giang
Nguyen Trai Road - Ha Giang Town - Ha Giang Province Transport Department of Lao Cai
Hoang Lien Road - Lao Cai city - Lao Cai Province Transport Department of Tuyen Quang
Phan Thiet Road - Tuyen Quang Town - Tuyen Quang Province Transport Department of Yen Bai
Yen Ninh Ward - Yen Bai city - Yen Bai Province
|Concept Clearance||28 Feb 2011|
|Fact Finding||07 Mar 2011 to 18 Mar 2011|
|MRM||13 Jul 2011|
|Approval||30 Sep 2011|
|Last Review Mission||-|
|PDS Creation Date||30 Mar 2010|
|Last PDS Update||29 Mar 2018|
|Approval||Signing Date||Effectivity Date||Closing|
|30 Sep 2011||02 Dec 2011||16 Apr 2012||30 Jun 2017||-||21 Aug 2018|
|Financing Plan||Loan Utilization|
|Total (Amount in US$ million)||Date||ADB||Others||Net Percentage|
|Project Cost||80.00||Cumulative Contract Awards|
|ADB||80.00||30 Sep 2011||67.71||0.00||98%|
|Cofinancing||0.00||30 Sep 2011||69.11||0.00||100%|
|Status of Covenants|
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No tenders for this project were found.
No contracts awarded for this project were found
|Title||Document Type||Document Date|
|Transport Connections in Northern Mountainous Provinces Project||Procurement Plans||Dec 2012|