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KUCHING, Sept 12: Big builders from China and West Malaysia are among many corporations bidding to construct the balance of work on the proposed coastal road network and second trunk road in Sarawak.
The cost of these two road projects is estimated at RM11 billion, making them the “largest construction contract for Sarawak”, said Minister of Infrastructure Development and Transportation Tan Sri Dr James Jemut Masing.
About 105 corporations submitted the pre-qualifying documents for these two mega projects which was smoothly carried out today.
Representatives from many large companies vying for the projects went to the Public Works Department (JKR) office at Wisma Saberkas as early as 9am to submit their documents. The JKR counter closed at noon.
Physical work on the 896km coastal road from Lundu to Miri is expected to start in the first quarter of 2019. It is scheduled to be completed in 10 years.
The second trunk road will greatly reduce travelling time between Kuching and Sibu. Currently, it takes about five hours to drive between Kuching and Sibu, but when the second trunk road is completed, the travelling time would be halved.
Masing, who is currently in Singapore for a medical checkup, said the state government was committed to building both roads to provide the necessary connectivity for the state to grow economically.
“All the companies who submitted their details and reports today are generally qualified. However, with these submissions, all companies will be re-evaluated based on their actual merits and relevant technical experience in building roads and bridges.
“The process of selection will be meticulous, and JKR will ensure they select the crème among the crème to ensure delivery. The work will start from today, and I wish JKR the best,” said Masing, who is also a Deputy Chief Minister.
On how many huge corporations tendered today, Masing said based on the brief report he received, the list included Yong Kong, Eastbourne, Titanium, CMS and PPES Works. Some of the companies participated on their own while others formed joint ventures with Fortune 500 companies.
“Big West Malaysian companies such as Mudajaya and Ekovest also submitted their documents to participate, just to name a few. We also have with us some of the largest Chinese builders who joint ventured with local builders. For detailed reports, I will have to look at the final list being compiled,” he said.
On the joint venture policy, whereby one company can only form one joint venture, Masing confirmed that it is correct.
“Any joint venture will need one local company to be the lead company. This will allow smaller companies to form joint ventures with larger companies, which indirectly nurtures our local companies to learn and grow.
“JKR will have to look through the list to make sure that there are no subsidiaries and parent companies that might be seen as duplication or read as collusion. JKR will try to be as transparent as possible,” he gave assurance. — DayakDaily