KUALA LUMPUR – June 28, 2017: The proposal to set up a Malaysia-China developers consortium for soil testing of the the second phase of the East Coast Railway Link (ECRL) has lapsed.
According to an email by a local representative of the consortium sighted by The Mole, the main ECRL contractor, China Communications Consortium Company Limited (CCCC), had informed it of the appointment of three soil investigation contractors from China.
The email also claimed that CCCC was not keen to meet and discuss the matter with local contractors.
According to the email, Malaysian soil investigation contractors will only be hired as sub-contractors by the three Chinese companies.
If all the information in the email is correct, the decision goes against the government’s assurance that only local companies will be hired for all development phases of the ECRL.
The email further cautions local soil investigation contractors who may be approached by the Chinese companies to be aware that the payment offered as sub-contractors may not be locally incorporated and that possible disputes may be difficult to resolve.
“In the meantime, we are gathering information and evidence to lodge our complaints to relevant authorities that foreign soil investigation contractors are taking away our jobs,” read the email.
CCCC had previously been accused of imposing a so-called impossible qualifying requirement on local contractors that were keen to participate in the second phase of the ECRL.
It is understood that if local contractors are unable to comply with the pre-requisites determined by CCCC, the company will hire foreign contractors.
Attempts to get clarifications from CCCC, Malaysia Railway Link Sdn. Bhd., Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Datuk Seri Abdul Rahman Dahlan, who is in charge of the ECRL, were unsuccessful.
The second phase of the ECRL involves an 88-kilometre line from Gombak to Port Klang.
When completed in June 2024, the 600-km electrified railway will link the Greater Klang Valley to Kelantan, Terrengganu and Pahang.