SBS Transit shares soar more than 10% on rail asset transfer talks with LTA

Woodleigh MRT station on the North East Line, operated by SBS Transit.
Woodleigh MRT station on the North East Line, operated by SBS Transit.PHOTO: ST FILE

SINGAPORE - Shares of SBS Transit jumped more than 10 per cent on Friday (July 15) after the Land Transport Authority (LTA) said that it remained in talks with the rail and taxi operator on the possibility of transferring its rail assets to the government, the Business Times reported.

SBS shares were trading around S$2.73 each, up 25 Singapore cents, or 10 per cent at 3.26pm.

"LTA is still in discussion with SBS Transit on the possibility of transiting its North East Line and Sengkang-Punggol LRT to the NRFF," LTA said, referring to to the New Rail Financing Framework (NRFF), which had been announced by the government in 2008.

Under the NRFF, the government will assume ownership of all bus services-related infrastructure and assets.

Meanwhile, rival SMRT had concluded talks with LTA.

SMRT has agreed to transfer the ownership of its rail assets, including trains and signalling systems, to LTA for $991 million. This is subject to shareholders' approval.

Its shares opened at $1.550 and were trading around $1.545 each, up half a cent, or 0.32 per cent at the time of the halt on Friday.