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Ministry Seeks Changes To Expressway Toll, Currency Exchange Rates

Source: Vientiane Times

The Investment Promotion Department of the Ministry of Planning and Investment has advised the Laos-China Joint Expressway Development Co., Ltd. to revise the toll rate currently charged for pick-up trucks and also the dollar-kip exchange rate.

These rates have been challenged by motorists, who say the toll charged for pick-ups is too high.

Since the expressway opened in December, many people have posted complaints on social media, saying the amount charged for pick-up trucks is unreasonable because these vehicles are classified as truck type 1.

The Investment Promotion Department recently instructed the company to review the toll charges and the dollar-kip exchange rate, as the toll charges are based on US dollars.

The Law on Land Transport states that private vehicles include small transport vehicles with seats for not more than nine people including the driver, which covers pick-ups.

Laos’ vehicle registration and management regulations state that heavy vehicles with four wheels include cars, jeeps, pick-ups and minibuses with not more than 15 seats.

The Investment Promotion Department has advised the company to change the pick-up toll rate in line with Lao law, saying the new toll should come into effect within two months.

The cost of travel on the expressway currently ranges from 600-2,000 kip per kilometre, depending on the type of vehicle.

The Laos-China Joint Expressway Development Co., Ltd. has set the toll rate at 600 kip per kilometre for vehicles not exceeding 2 tonnes in weight, totalling 66,000 kip for a one-way journey. Vehicles weighing 2-5 tonnes are charged 1,000 kip per kilometre, totalling 110,000 kip; vehicles weighing 5-10 tonnes pay 1,400 kip per kilometre, totalling 154,000 kip; and vehicles weighing 10-15 tonnes are charged 2,000 kip per kilometre, totalling 220,000 kip.

For passenger vehicles, the rate is 600 to 2,000 kip per kilometre depending on the number of seats.

Vehicles with not more than seven seats are charged 600 kip per kilometre; the rate is 1,000 kip per kilometre for vehicles with 8-9 seats; 1,400 kip per kilometre for vehicles with 20-39 seats; and vehicles with 40 or more seats are charged 2,000 kip per kilometre.

The vehicles are weighed before entering the expressway.