‘Land fever’ peaks near major airport project in southern Vietnam

While the exact location for the construction of a major airport in southern Vietnam is still pending approval, countless plots of land around the potential venue have been put up for sale.

The feasibility report for the location of Long Thanh International Airport, located in the namesake district in the southern province of Dong Nai, is still being finalized before being submitted to the National Assembly for approval.

Located just 50 kilometers from Ho Chi Minh City’s Tan Son Nhat airport, Long Thanh is expected to alleviate passenger load in the overcrowded southern hub once comlpeted.

The plan to build the airport was ratified by Vietnam’s lawmaking National Assembly in 2015.

A series of land plots surrounding the proposed location for construction have been advertised for sale with countless flyers pasted on nearby utility posts.

Contacting the phone number on one of the leaflets, Tuoi Tre (Youth) newspaper reporters reached a broker named Phu, who offered a 615 square-meter piece of land in Loc An Commune at VND360 million (US$15,807).

“If you don’t buy it right now, the price will be different next month,” Phu urged, adding that the rate rises every day.

In another area, a land project has been open for sale since April, Hien, a marketer employed by the company, said, explaining that each square meter was valued at VND7.9 million (US$346).

About 70 percent of the project had already been purchased, Hien continued, anticipating that the price would be much higher next month.

According to Tran Kiem Hoa, a resident in Binh Son Commune, land prices in the neighborhood are now 30 percent higher than last year.

“In 2015, a piece of land near my house cost about VND2.8 billion [US$122,944] per hectare, the price is now VND4 billion [US$175,635],” Hoa elaborated.

Buyers can scout the area to find themselves the best deals or just search on the Internet, the local man continued.

Hoang, a business owner in Long Thanh District with a broad understanding of local real estate, said that land prices around the future new airport had risen by 20 to 40 percent since the beginning of the year.

Investors from Ho Chi Minh City and the surrounding area have sought investment in these properties in the hope of reaping large profits in the future, Hoang explained.

Local land owners have been taking advantage of loopholes in housing laws to divide their land plots into smaller pieces before selling to various buyers.   

“The situation can get out of control if the relevant authorities do not figure out measures to manage the sale of land in the area,” he warned.

According to an official from the Long Thanh People’s Committee, the ‘land fever’ has become an aching problem for local authorities.

The administration has suggested that relevant ministries establish a specific plan for a 21,000 hectare vicinity around the Long Thanh airport to manage the situation.