SRT agrees to delay in sealing deal
The board of the State Railway of Thailand (SRT) has approved the proposed delay to the signing of Contract 2.3 on the Bangkok-Nong Khai High-Speed Train Project by 90 more days, said SRT governor Niruj Maneepun.
Mr Niruj said the signing of Contract 2.3, which includes the cost of purchasing tracks, an electrical system, machinery, procurement of train carriages, and training, has been extended from Oct 31 this year due to delays forced by the Covid-19 pandemic.
The new deadline has been pushed back to Jan 31 of next year, he said, adding that the SRT will have to propose the board's decision to the cabinet for approval. The cabinet already approved an allocation of 50.6 billion baht for Contract 2.3 and the draft contract.
There are a total of 14 contracts involved in the the 179-billion-baht, 253-kilometre rail route from Bangkok to Nakhon Ratchasima in the Northeast.
According to Mr Niruj, the SRT board, chaired by the Department of Land Transport chief Chirute Visalachitra, has also approved the outcome of the bidding for the construction of a train maintenance depot centre at Chiang Rak Noi in Pathum Thani.
Italian-Thai Development Plc, which offered 6.57 billion baht, 16.6% below the reference price of 7.66 billion baht, won the e-bidding for the project, he said. The contract signing will be scheduled soon without having to wait for an additional environment impact assessment (EIA) study.
Of the 14 contracts, two have been signed; the construction of the 3.5km section from Klang Dong to Pang Asoke was completed while the construction of the 11-km Sikhiu-Kut Chick section is underway. The bidding has proceeded for the other 11 contracts except the one involving construction of a 15.2km stretch from Bang Sue to Don Muang as it overlaps with a project linking Don Mueang, Suvarnabhumi and U-Tapao airports.