Work on the 220km Vietnamese segment of the 1,000km transnational highway linking the Greater Mekong Subregion will begin in the second quarter of 2010, a senior official of the My Thuan Project Management Unit has said.

The $500m highway section in Vietnam will run on the western coast of the Cuu Long (Mekong) Delta and is expected to be completed by the end of 2013.

The first phase, expected to cost $390m, will be funded by a $75m loan from the Asian Development Bank, a $25m ODA loan from Australia and a preferential loan of $134m from South Korea.

Running from Bangkok, Thailand, passing the border towns in Cambodia and Vietnam before ending in Ca Mau Province the highway is expected to bring huge economic benefits to the South-East Asian countries.

The highway’s Thailand section has been built, with just 34km remaining in the Cambodian section, according to