BTS asked to pay 100 billion construction costs in exchange for 30 year concession extension

Manit Techa-apichoke, president of Bangkok Metropolitan Administration-owned Krungthep Thanakhom, says the state firm was empowered by Article 44 of the interim charter to conduct negotiations with the Bangkok Mass Transit System (BTS) over the 100 billion baht debt transfer and concession extension. Manit says the negotiation should be completed in about two months.

The Nation reports that the BMA will negotiate with the BTS to shoulder the cost of construction of two extended BTS Skytrain routes worth 100 billion baht in exchange for the extension of its license to 30 years.

If the BTS agrees to shoulder the cost of construction of the two extended routes, plus accrued interest worth 100 billion baht, the BMA will grant a new 30 year concession for the main routes and all extended routes. The debt covers the construction cost of the northern route of Morchit-Saphan Mai-Khukot extension and the Bearing-Samut Prakan extension.

If negotiations are successful, the concession for the main routes from Mor Chit to On Nut and the National Stadium to Taksin Bridge, which will end in 2029, will be extended to 2059, Manit said.

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And the contract for hiring the BTS to operate two extended routes from On Nut to Bearing and from Taksin Bridge to Bang Wa, which will expire in 2042, will also be extended to 2059, Manit said. The BMA has paid for the construction cost of these two routes and hired the BTS to operate the extended routes.

The concession for operating the Bearing-Samut Prakan extension and Morchit-Saphan Mai-Khukot extension will also run to 2059, he added.

Find out more about Bangkok’s BTS system HERE.

Manit said the BTS would be asked to shoulder the cost of construction of the Morchit-Saphan Mai-Khukot route and Bearing-Samut Prakan route, which have been built by the Mass Rapid Transit Authority of Thailand (MRTA). The MRTA has built the elevated railways for the two routes and will require the BMA to pay for the construction cost while the BMA will in turn ask the BTS to shoulder the cost.

Yesterday (Monday), Manit and Surachet Laopoolsuk, deputy governor of MRTA, witnessed the test-run of a BTS Skytrain for one station on the extended Morchit-Saphan Mai-Khukot route. The test-run ended at the Lat Phrao Intersection station.

Surachet said the MRTA has finished the construction of the elevated railway and that Krungthep Thanakhom and BTS started installing the electric and train controls system in March.

Surachet said the Skytrain service to the Lat Prao Intersection service would be available from August 11 in a free test-run period and it will be extended to the Kasetsat University Intersection in December.

“The entire route service to Khukot will be operational in late 2020”.

SOURCE: The Nation

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