MRTA told to stick with old Orange Line bid criteria

MRTA told to stick with old Orange Line bid criteria

Transport Minister Saksayam Chidchob presides over a ceremony to mark the start-up of a third tunnel boring machine on the Orange Line's east section stretching from the Thailand Cultural Centre to Min Buri on March 20. (File Photo by Somchai Poomlard)
Transport Minister Saksayam Chidchob presides over a ceremony to mark the start-up of a third tunnel boring machine on the Orange Line's east section stretching from the Thailand Cultural Centre to Min Buri on March 20. (File Photo by Somchai Poomlard)

The Central Administrative Court on Tuesday ruled that the Mass Rapid Transit Authority of Thailand (MRTA) must stick with the old bidding criteria for its Orange Line project.

The court's verdict was in response to a petition in September by one of the potential bidders, Bangkok Mass Transit System Plc (BTSC), saying the changed bidding terms could lead to unfair competition.

That petition came after the MRTA revised the bidding terms for the 140-billion-baht Orange Line despite it already having sold bid envelopes to 10 bidders.

The previous bidding terms considered those who promised the highest financial return; the amended version would take into account two factors — the technical aspects of the project and the financial return.  

The court ruling on Tuesday requires the MRTA and a bid selection committee under Section 36 of the Public-Private Partnership Act BE 2562 to delay the enforcement of the amended bidding.

However, the court has given the MRTA 30 days to appeal against the court’s injunction.

The Orange Line western extension will link the Thailand Cultural Centre with Bang Khun Non in the Thon Buri area.

The 13.4km section is part of the 22.57km Orange Line project and the bid winner will be granted a 30-year concession to operate the line.

The chosen contractor was originally expected to be announced in January.


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