How cellphones will be MRT, LRT tickets

by Ria de Fiesta,

Posted at Feb 11 2014 10:26 PM | Updated as of Feb 12 2014 07:52 AM

AF Consortium defends LRT-MRT ticket system bid

MANILA – The consortium of Ayala Corp. and Metro Pacific Investments Corp. on Tuesday said it bagged the contact for the P1.7 billion Light Rail Transit (LRT) and Metro Rail Transit (MRT) one-ticketing system fair and square, through a transparent public bidding.

This, after the SM consortium said it submitted a superior bid, which was an offer to pay the government the full bid amount of P1.008 billion upfront.

But Noel Kintanar, spokesperson of the AF Consortium, told DZMM on Tuesday that paying the government upfront is a violation of the bid rules laid out by the Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC).

“The rules were clear, which was given to all bidders, and which we all signed. Hindi namin pwede i-contest ang rules na inilatag ng DOTC. We are to pay the government on a quarterly basis for 10 years. Wala sa rules na pwede ka magbayad upfront,” Kintanar said.

“We just went by the rules. Hindi conditional ang bid, it is unconditional,” he added.

Kintanar also said bidders were given one form, which was filled up online, as part of the bidding process.
“Nagbigay sila ng isang form na hindi pwedeng baguhin, hindi pwedeng palitan ng kung anu-anong formula. Fill in the blanks yun. The formula produces one number, and the one with the highest number wins,” Kintanar said.

“Ngayong natalo ang isang partido, madaya na kami,” he lamented.

“Let us not forget kung sino ang investors -- Metro Pacific, Smart, Globe, Ayala. These are shareholders and companies committed to serving the public. We are committed to deliver service,” Kintanar said.

Under the project, Kintanar said they are eyeing the use of cellphones as the ticketing medium.

“Wala nang bubunot sa bulsa ng wallet. Ang cellphone na mismo ang magiging ticket. All commuters have cellphones, so hindi na sila mahihirapan. Kung nasa LRT1 ka, hindi na kailangan bumili pa ng ticket if you’re in MRT3,” he said.

“Give us the opportunity to do our commitment, because we are fully committed to fulfill it unconditionally,” he said.

The AF Consortium made the "most advantageous offer," proposing not only to undertake the modernization project, but also to make premium payments to government in the amount of P1,088,103,900.

The SM Consortium submitted the second-best offer with P1,088,000,000.

The DOTC said this means the government can implement a common ticketing system for the MRT and LRT, and at the same time generating revenues for the government without passing the cost to passengers.

Under the concession agreement, the AFCS ticketing system will be implemented at the LRT and MRT by September 2015.