Thursday, September 2, 2010

Subic-Tarlac Road Auction Still Draws Interest

Subic-Tarlac road auction still draws interest
04/11/2007 | 10:34 PM


Two groups that had previously qualified to bid for the 10-year contract to operate the Subic-Clark-Tarlac Expressway (SCTEx) appear interested in participating in the rebidding being pushed by the Bases Conversion and Development Authority (BCDA).

One group, publicly listed Metro Pacific Investments Corp. (MPIC) represented by its vice-president, David C. Nugent, said in a phone interview that the company is interested in the project, but wants the BCDA to extend the 10-year contract.

"We studied the terms that the BCDA put out for the tollway and found them to be quite difficult in the long termparticularly on the 10-year period," he said. "MPIC is interested, [but] we have raised concerns to the commercial aspect to the bid. We’re waiting for clarification from the government."

On the other hand, Lopez-owned publicly listed First Philippine Holdings Corp. said its position depends on the eligibility papers and requirements the BCDA will set. "We’re interested in the project, but whether we rebid or not depends on the eligibility documents [that BCDA asks for]," said a company official who refused to be named.

The SCTEx is a 93.77-kilometer, four-lane tollway consisting of two parts, namely: the 50.5-km, four-lane Subic-Clark section; and the 43.27-km., four-lane Clark-Tarlac segment.

The BCDA planned to conclude the bid last month, but it did not push through due to concerns on the terms of the contract.

The management contract, sche-duled to be in effect from May 13, 2007 to 2017, will cover toll collection, traffic management, road maintenance, general administration, as well as greening and landscaping.

The financial terms of the contract allow for a maximum of 12.2% sharing of toll fees every year with the winning bidder for the 10-year contract period.

In a notice put out this week, the BCDA called for interested parties to submit letters of intent to apply for eligibility before April 21 as well as re-levant eligibility documents before May 1. The new notice stated that the contract still set a 12.2% maximum threshold under a 10-year contract period.

The BCDA earlier required interested parties to have at least a year of experience in toll road operations and a total asset value of P500 million du-ring the prequalification stage.

BCDA financed the construction of the expressway through a P21-billion loan from the Japan Bank for International Cooperation. The BCDA has also secured a standby P2.5-billion credit line from local banks.

Aside from the two eligible parties, 11 other firms had earlier expressed interest in the project: Mideast Alliance Resources Corp.; Canadian engineering firm SNC Lavalin International; Ausphil Tollways Corp.; Pacific Concrete Pro-ducts, Inc.; UEM-MARA Philippines Corp.; R.D. Policarpio Co., Inc.; Metro Pacific Investments Corp.; Ayala Property Management Corp.; STAR Infrastructure Development Corp.; J.V. Angeles Construction Corp.; and Pietras Builders Inc. — Reagan D. Tan/BusinessWorld


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