Wednesday, 6 January 2010

MNTC, SMC vie for SCTEX contract

To operate, manage and maintain toll road
By BERNIE CAHILES-MAGKILAT
Manila Bulletin
http://mb.com.ph/articles/237042/mntc-smc-vie-sctex-contract

Pangilinan-led Manila North Tollways Corp. and Northlink Toll Management Inc., a joint venture between San Miguel Corp. and STAR Tollways Corp., are vying for the 33 and half-year contract to operate, manage and maintain Subic-Clark-Tarlac Expressway.

Rolando C. Manalo, acting head for the technical working group for SCTEX of the Bases Conversion Development Authority, said the two beat Tuesday’s deadline, (Jan. 5), for submission of bid documents out of the original six contenders.

The other four interested bidders that did not show up include the Citra Group, San Miguel Corporation, Amicus Holdings, Inc. and IL&FS Transportation Networks Ltd.

MNTC, which is led by businessman Manny Pangilinan of Metro Pacific Investments Corp., is the current operator of the North Luzon Expressway.

This would be the first for San Miguel to operate a tollway if it wins the SCTEX contract over MNTC. STAR Tollways, on the other hand, is the current operator of the Southern Tagalog Arterial Road.

Manalo said that under the revised schedule, the Issuance of Notice of Award would be this January 22. The subsequent contract signing and Issuance of Notice to Proceed will be on February 22, 2010.

On November 16, 2009, BCDA opened the SCTEX data room at the Bonifacio Technology Center in Taguig City, following the bidders request that they be provided all the information needed to come up with an accurate and realistic offer.

Five out of six bidders have visited the place and gathered such relevant data as the actual traffic volume and revenue, traffic study and operations manual. A separate data room for engineering plans, drawings and technical specifications is also available at the BCDA construction and engineering project management office in Clark.

Both the BCDA Taguig and Clark SCTEX data rooms are open to the bidders until December 23, 2009, except Sundays and holidays.

Under the SCTEX privatization program, the winning bidder will enter into a lease or concession agreement with BCDA to manage, operate and maintain the SCTEX on “as is, where is,” basis for a period of 33 and a half years until 2043.

The winning bidder will be responsible for the operational funding requirements in running the country’s longest tollway, including periodic maintenance and emergency works, which will be covered by a performance security.

The private sector partner will also arrange for the insurance of the 93.77-kilometer toll road.

BCDA will receive a semi-annual lease/concession fee from the winning bidder, amounting to either: the peso equivalent of yen-dominated JBIC/JICA loan debt servicing as well as all financing charges payable to BCDA 10 days prior to its due dates secured by a rolling five-year letter of credit; or twenty percent of audited gross revenues whichever is higher.

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