DOTC looking for new MRT-3 contractor

Posted at 10/17/2012 5:51 PM | Updated as of 10/17/2012 11:21 PM

MANILA, Philippines - The government is now looking for a new maintenance contractor for the Metro Rail Transit line 3 (MRT-3), after it decided not to renew the contract with Japanese firm Sumitomo Corp.

The government's contract with Sumitomo expires on Friday (October 19).

In a meeting last October 3, the Metro Rail Transit Corp. board of directors was told by MRT-3 general manager Al Vitangcol III that the DOTC will not extend the contract of Sumitomo.

Vitangcol asked the MRTC to appoint an interim new maintenance provider.

However, Metro Pacific Investments Corp. (MPIC), which holds a substantial stake in MRTC, said there is no time to get an interim maintenance provider within the 2-week period provided by the DOTC. It added that the responsibility of getting a new maintenance provider was transferred to the DOTC in 2010.

"MRTC is not abdicating its responsibility to maintain MRT3 but the DOTC left MRTC with no choice but to have DOTC take responsibility for the interim period. MRTC has advised DOTC that it is willing to resume the responsibility of maintaining the MRT 3 after the expiration of the DOTC's interim maintenance contract  provided MRTC is given sufficient time to undertake a proper selection process," said MPIC in a disclosure to the stock exchange.

MPIC promised to assist the DOTC in getting a new interim maintenance provider for MRT 3 to address the issues raised by Sumitomo. Sumitomo had earlier raised maintenance issues, including a lack of spare parts for the train's signaling system.