MRT Update: Prasarana eases conditions for pre-qualification for MRT tender, promises stringent selection process

TRANSIT took note of an announcement from Prasarana that they had eased some of the conditions for pre-qualification for tenders for the MRT project – after being accused of deliberately sidelining Bumiputera contractors.

Prasarana at the time defended themselves, saying that the stringent conditions were meant to ensure that only “genuine, qualified and competent contractors” would be selected.

Saying that, we continue to wonder about the selection of the Independent Checking Engineer – a company rejected by Prasarana apparently chosen after Prasarana was overruled by the government.

At the time Shahril Mokhtar, Group Managing Director, was quoted as saying that it was the government’s money, therefore they had the final say.

No. It is our money. We pay the costs. And if the MRT is not planned, financed built and operated properly, it will be our loss. We, the rakyat, have the final say.

Prasarana eases tender conditions (The Malaysian Insider)
By Yow Hong Chieh
May 19, 2011

KUALA LUMPUR, May 19 — Syarikat Prasarana Negara Bhd appears to have caved in to pressure from Malay rights groups today when it revised pre-qualification criteria for several construction packages for the Klang Valley Mass Rapid Transit (KVMRT).

The project owner said contractors who wish to tender for elevated civil works, stations and depots work construction packages will be allowed to form joint ventures (JV) or consortiums among local companies starting from tomorrow.

“Prasarana has always been sensitive to all constructive views for our projects and the stand is reflected again in this decision, which was made purely based on the need to get more contractors to participate and the need to make the bidding for the KVMRT project more competitive,” the company said in a statement today.

“Although we have revised the pre-qualification criteria, Prasarana will continue to ensure that only genuine, qualified and competent contractors to be selected to bid for the work contract packages. We will review contractors based on their proven past track records and financial capacity.”

The joint venture or consortium, however, should not involve more than three companies and contractors will only be allowed to submit a maximum of two applications to “ensure a quality and efficient partnership”.

The elevated stations and depots work packages include building works, station M&E works, traction and power sub-station building works, park and ride facilities, depot building drainage, depot equipment and landscape works while the elevated civil works package include substructure works, elevated guideway structure and segmental girders.

Prasarana had on March 30 imposed additional criteria on contractors taking part in the project tender which disallowed them from forming joint ventures or consortiums.

Group managing director Shahril Mokhtar said this was to ensure that only “genuine, competent and suitably qualified” contractors who could meet the project deadline were selected.

“The pre-qualification criteria are not overly stringent and enable many experienced contractors to qualify on their own without entering into a joint venture with others,” he had said in a statement.

But Perkasa was quick to accuse Prasarana of blocking Bumiputera contractors from participating by enforcing “strict” guidelines that would only benefited “rich non-Bumis”, saying that MMC-Gamuda was “looting and monopolising” the project.

The Malay Chamber of Commerce Malaysia later asked the government to hand over the whole project to it as Bumiputera contractors were finding it hard to bid for tenders.

The KVMRT is expected to be the largest-ever construction project in Malaysia and had earlier been estimated to cost between RM36 billion and RM53 billion.

Prasarana has said, however, that those estimates are now outdated and new estimates will be made once the alignment is finalised in June.

TRANSIT Says:

Nothing. We are busy being sick.

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4 thoughts on “MRT Update: Prasarana eases conditions for pre-qualification for MRT tender, promises stringent selection process”

  1. @SPAD/PRASARANA/MOAZ TRANSITMY,

    What are your specific and clear definition, criteria, specifications, conditions and standards of so called stringent selection process??

    1. @Jeffrey

      You can read the article to see what Shahril Mokhtar of Prasarana says. You could also contact SPAD & Prasarana directly – the email addresses and phone numbers can be found on our website.

      As for TRANSIT, our views are the following:

      • MRT planning must go through an open & transparent public consultation process (which should last at least 2 years)
      • All companies interested in pre-qualification for tendering for public works projects must demonstrate the ability to raise the necessary capital – hence the RM300,000 bond purchase required by Prasarana;
      • All companies interested in pre-qualification for tendering for public works projects must demonstrate prior experience in works packages for similar or related public works. Meaning that if a company in involved in steel production but has never built a railway, they have to prove themselves; In other words, no RM2 companies set up just for the purpose of acquiring a tender, paying kickbacks, and flipping the actual work to someone else.!
      • All tenders for the MRT construction works and operations should be open to international companies as they will subcontract to local companies anyways;
      • Requests for Proposals (RFP) and Requests for Expressions of Interest (RFI) and tenders should be made public throughout the tender process (application, selection, award). Direct negotiations should be avoided as much as possible and should only take place if selection is not possible through open tender;
      • Conflicts of interest should be avoided as much as possible;
      • The Project Delivery Partner should not be allowed to tender for any works projects;

      Regards, Moaz for TRANSIT

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