Vietnam’s Prime Minister Phan Van Khai has agreed to a US$66.5M project to restore the country’s 40-year-old Da Nhim hydroelectric power plant, according to local media.

US$64M will come from Japanese official development assistance (ODA) loans, approximately US$2.9M will be financed by domestic sources and the rest will be provided by Electricity of Vietnam.

The restoration project was successfully bid for by joint ventures between Japan’s Mitsubishi motors and the |Mitsubishi Electric Company, Japan’s Sojitz and Toshiba and Vietnam’s Tecapro Finnish company Vaisala.

Built in 1962, the Da Nhim plant began operating in 1964. Sustained use has worn out most of the plant’s equipment, leaving it short of the productivity that saw it generate 60% of southern Vietnam’s electricity between 1975-88.

Restoration should be complete in mid-2006.