Six show interest in KL-Singapore rail tender

KUALA LUMPUR • The tender for a company that will help develop key parts of the high-speed rail linking Singapore and Malaysia has attracted six potential bidders, reported Bernama news agency.

The company, called the Assets Company (AssetsCo), will be responsible for designing, building, financing and maintaining all rolling stock, as well as designing, building, financing, operating and maintaining all rail assets such as trackwork, power, signalling and telecommunications for the high-speed rail network.

MyHSR Corporation, the Malaysian firm in charge of developing the rail project, said the bidders were expected to submit their proposals by June this year.

Another six months will be needed for evaluation, with the winners to be announced by December, chief executive officer Mohd Nur Ismal Mohamed Kamal told a press conference on Wednesday.

"So far, six potential bidders have registered and bought the tender documents, but we cannot tell at this time how many proposals we expect to receive as there might be some mergers," he said.

"But we are hoping all bidders will stay in the race and submit as many proposals as possible, so that we can get the best value," he added.

Datuk Mohd Nur Ismal also said the six potential bidders were consortiums from China, Japan, South Korea and European countries, as well as a group from Singapore and another from Malaysia, reported Bernama.

He noted that the tender was still open and any potential bidder could still submit its bid before the end of June.

On news that the opposition might cancel rail projects if it secured victory in the upcoming general election, he said as far as the Kuala Lumpur-Singapore High-Speed Rail (HSR) project was concerned, Malaysia had signed a bilateral agreement with Singapore.

It was a legally binding agreement, which means any cancellation and delay of the project would lead to compensation issues.

Hence, any such situation will not benefit any party, he added.

Mr Mohd Nur Ismal said the mega-project would give multifold benefits and should not be aborted. It was expected to generate RM650 billion (S$220 billion) in gross national income over 50 years and create 442,000 jobs.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on April 13, 2018, with the headline 'Six show interest in KL-S'pore rail tender'. Print Edition | Subscribe