Chinese and Korean contractors ordered by court to compensate for low-quality Vietnam expressway.

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    Oct 28, 2023

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Court orders contractors from China, South Korea, and Vietnam to pay $18.7 million in compensation for delivering subpar expressway.


The payment for the Da Nang – Quang Ngai Expressway project in central Vietnam is designated to be sent to Vietnam Expressway Corporation (VEC) under the Transport Ministry.

After a 12-day trial, the Hanoi People's Court announced that Shandong Province Traffic Works Corporation, a Chinese contractor, has been ordered to pay VND129 billion, and Jiangsu Province Construction Corporation, another Chinese contractor, is liable for VND85 billion. Similarly, the court ruled that the two Korean contractors, Lotte E&C and Posco E&C, must compensate VND127 billion and VND71 billion respectively.

CC1, the contractor from Vietnam, was instructed to remit a sum of VND47.5 billion.

Photo credit: VnExpress/Danh Lam - Former leaders of Vietnam Expressway Corporation and other defendants appear at a trial in Hanoi to address their accountability for the substandard quality of the Da Nang - Quang Ngai Expressway, held in October 2023.

The court has sentenced 22 individuals, including 11 former VEC leaders, to jail terms of up to 6 years for their involvement in the expressway construction, as per the verdict.

Tran Van Tam, a previous general director of VEC, has been sentenced to a term of five and a half years due to his involvement in construction violations and negligence.

Mai Tuan Anh, a previous general director at VEC, has been sentenced to 42 months due to his negligence that resulted in severe consequences.

The construction of the Da Nang-Quang Ngai Expressway started in 2013 and was successfully finished in 2018. This significant infrastructure project, valued at VND34.5 trillion ($1.4 billion), was funded through loans provided by the Japan International Cooperation Agency, the World Bank, as well as counterpart funds from the government.

Concerns regarding the construction quality initially emerged in 2018 after cracks and potholes appeared merely a month after the completion of the project. These structural flaws, measuring several hundred centimeters in size and reaching depths of 5-10 cm, manifested following a substantial downpour.

After a deluge of rainfall in October 2018, the Da Nang-Expressway suffered from the emergence of numerous noticeable potholes. This issue was captured in an image taken by VnExpress/Dac Thanh.

The trial that concluded on Friday marked the second instance of addressing the subpar condition of the expressway and the handling of violations during its second phase, spanning over 72 km. These violations were found to have resulted in damages estimated at VND460 billion.

In December 2021, a second trial took place concerning the infringements committed during the initial phase of the project, which covers a distance of 65 km. These violations resulted in a considerable loss estimated at VND811 billion. As a consequence of this trial, two high-ranking officials working for VEC were sentenced to six and seven years in prison for their involvement in construction irregularities. In addition, 34 other individuals received varying sentences, ranging from two years of probation to eight and a half years behind bars.

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