SMC, Ayala-MPIC, 2 others to vie for LRT-2 deal
CONGLOMERATES San Miguel Corp., Aboitiz Equity Ventures, DMCI Holdings Inc. and the Ayala Corp.- Metro Pacific Investments team yesterday signified formally their intention to participate in the bidding for the long-term operations and maintenance contract for the Light Rail Transit Line 2 in Metro Manila.
The four groups partnered with various international railway operators ahead of the submission of qualification documents for the LRT-2 public-private partnership deal, said Michael Sagcal, spokesman for the Department of Transportation and Communications.
San Miguel partnered with Korea Railroad Corp., DMCI unit D.M Consunji Inc. partnered with Tokyo Metro Co. of Japan, Aboitiz Equity Ventures partnered with Singapore’s SMRT Transportation and Ayala-Metro Pacific-led Light Rail Manila partnered with France’s RATP Dev.
The qualification process is meant to determine which groups will be allowed to submit technical and financial offers. The deadline for qualification documents was pushed back from last month after several bidders sought more time.
“Railway modernization entails improving infrastructure and shifting services toward better customer-orientation. Our projects for LRT-2 will make fast, affordable, and convenient transportation accessible to residents of the densely populated parts of Rizal, such as Antipolo and Cainta,” Transportation Secretary Joseph Abaya said in a statement.
The LRT-2 PPP deal calls for the private sector to operate and maintain the existing line for a period of 10 years, extendable by another five years.
The 13.8-kilometer LRT-2 line runs from Recto Avenue to the Depot at Santolan Street along Marcos Highway. It currently traverses the cities of Manila, San Juan, Quezon City, Marikina, and Pasig. The railway line handled almost 200,000 people per day in 2014, latest data from the Light Rail Transit Authority showed.
John Eric Francia, managing director at Ayala, said it made sense for their group to pursue the LRT-2 deal because Light Rail Manila in 2014 already bagged the P65-billion LRT-1 Cavite extension PPP.
“We can leverage our capabilities and provide consistent quality service between the lines,” Francia said.
The transportation department will separately build an “East extension,” from Santolan to the Masinag market in Antipolo City along Marcos Highway. Once completed, the LRT-2 concessionaire will also operate the extension project.
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