KUALA LUMPUR, May 5 — An
engineering consortium led by HSS Integrated Sdn Bhd (HSSI) has been on
board as an independent check engineer (ICE) for the Klang Valley Mass Rapid
Transit (MRT) since February although the project owners said last month
they have yet to finalise the lucrative contract.
Syarikat Prasarana Negara Berhad (SPNB) group director for project
development Zulkifli Yusoff said a Letter of Intent (LOI) was awarded in
February to a joint venture between HSSI and Canadian company SNC-Lavalin.
“We are waiting for Ministry of Finance approval and they (HSSI-SNC) are on
board during the initial period,” he said during a media briefing today.
“The report said the consortium of HSSI, Hong Kong’s MTR Corp Ltd and
Canadian SNC-Lavalin was likely to land the contract despite being rejected
by SPNB earlier for not putting a price to its brief — which usually costs
up to 0.8 per cent of the total project.
It was understood that the matter was taken off the agenda at the last
Concerns have been raised over the involvement of HSSI, moreover as it
apparently had an existing working relationship with MRT project delivery
partner (PDP), MMC-Gamuda, through the ongoing double-tracking rail project
in north Malaysia.
SPNB responded to the report later in the day saying that they had not
finalised appointing an independent check engineer (ICE) but said any
speculation over the fees will jeopardise its negotiations.
“The appointment of the KVMRT ICE is not finalised. Speculation of the ICE
fee quantum at this point will only jeopardise our ability to negotiate
competitive fees from the ICE candidates,” said SPNB group managing director
Shahril Mokhtar in a media statement.
“Prasarana will table the best negotiated fee to the Ministry of Finance,
who is the final approving authority on this appointment.”
Regarding the relationship between HSSI and project delivery partner (PDP)
MMC-Gamuda joint-venture, Shahril said the PDP has clarified that “HSSI was
one of the many local consultants who were engaged for the Electrified
Double Track Project (Ipoh to Padang Besar).
“HSSI was appointed to design road bridges for the project in May 2007 and
they completed their job in May 2008,” he added
Shahril also said the ICE “is common for large-scale projects involving
large capital expenditure and requiring a high degree of integration to meet
the key objectives: implementation on schedule, and within budget and
Some 100 firms have applied for pre-qualification for the 16 packages in the
elevated part of the 51km-long MRT; the deadline for pre-qualification ended
on April 13.
The MRT is the country’s biggest infrastructure project and also the largest
National Key Economic Area (NKEA) project under Prime Minister Datuk Seri
Najib Razak’s New Economic Model (NEM).
The cost for the project was earlier reported to be between RM36 billion to
as high as RM50 billion although authorities say those estimates are now
outdated and no figure can be finalised before the alignment is confirmed in
The massive project is expected to generate 130,000 jobs during its
five-year construction phase.
The government aims to have more than half of the population in Greater
Kuala Lumpur use the public transport system to prevent traffic congestion.
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