Published on November 12, 2007
Not a single company has tendered for the Bt388-million project to provide natural-gas vehicles for the Bangkok Metropolitan Administra-tion's Bus Rapid Transit system. The e-auction to find a supplier ended last Friday without an official bid despite the fact that as many as 18 companies had bought tender envelopes, Deputy Bangkok Governor Panich Vikitsreth said yesterday.
Panich said the Traffic and Transportation Department of the Bangkok Metropolitan Administra-tion (BMA) has now asked all 18 companies to explain why they did not join the auction.
The department will also discuss the issue with Panich today. "There are two possible reasons to explain what happened. The first is that the terms of reference for the project are too strict. Second, there is some lobbying going on to prevent interested companies from tendering," Panich said.
According to deputy city clerk Ratthapol Meethanathavorn, companies might have been reluctant to bid for the project because the BMA clearly states that it will impose a Bt777,554 daily fine on the successful bidder if it fails to provide the vehicles within the specified date.
Panich also admitted receiving complaints that the project's budget was too low for 45 natural-gas vehicles. "But we have reviewed all information and the Bt388.77-million budget for the project is appropriate," he said.
However, relevant officials will meet to discuss how to proceed with the e-auction and to determine whether any conditions should be changed, he said.
Despite the delay in finding a supplier, Panich is confident that the first route of the Bus Rapid Transit system between Chong Nonsee and Ratchaphruek Road will be able to start by next August as scheduled.