Chinese firm qualifies for MRT-3 project

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One China state-owned firm, Dalian Locomotive & Rolling Stock Co. CNR Group, qualified for the P3.769 billion project to acquire 48 new coaches for MRT-3

A Metro Rail Transit (MRT) train is seen Manila on October 31, 2010. AFP PHOTO/NOEL CELIS

MANILA, Philippines — One China state-owned firm — Dalian Locomotive & Rolling Stock Co. CNR Group — qualified for the P3.769 billion project, which involves acquiring new and additional coaches for the Metro Rail Transit Line 3 (MRT-3).

In a statement, the Department of Transportation and Communication (DOTC) said Dalian Locomotive’s bid was found eligible and will now go through detailed evaluation and post-qualification exercises.

Only two bidders — both Chinese — participated in the submission and opening of bids on Tuesday, June 11. However, CSR Zhuzhou Electric Locomotive Co., however, was disqualified after it failed to submit a a technical specification required for the contract, the certificate of reciprocity and a simulator.

The project involves the supply of 48 light rail vehicles (LRVs) to decongest the MRT-3, which carries 600,000 passengers a day. Its load limit is only 350,000 daily.

The MRT-3 lacks 70 coaches. The bidding process for the first batch of 48 that would augment the existing 73 Czech-made LRVs. 

The bidding process kicked off in February, but deadlines have been moved several times. The initial bidding period for the trains was slated for April 30 but the DOTC moved it to May 30 to “refine the Terms of Referrence (TOR)” because they received comments that the initial TOR was “too inclined for one specific bidder.”


“We looked at our options for purchasing some of the coaches from Metro de Madrid, but it turns out that this would not have significantly improved the timeframe we are working on,” DOTC spokesperson Migs Sagcal said in a statement.

“So we decided to continue with the ongoing procurement of new trains instead. This should also result in lower maintenance costs,” he added.

The MRT-3 capacity expansion project is meant to decongest the system’s overcrowded service by allowing more cars to operate at a faster interval rate during peak hour.

From the present 3-minute intervals of 3-car LRVs, the additional trains will allow 2.5-minute intervals of 4-car LRVs, improving passenger convenience and service reliability. –

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