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Termination of MRT-3 contract with Korean maintenance provider mulled

MANILA, Philippines - The Department of Transportation (DOTr) is mulling the termination of the contract of Metro Rail Transit Line 3 (MRT-3) with its maintenance provider Busan Universal Rail Inc. (BURI).

The DOTr is seeking an explanation from BURI on why its contract with the government should not be partially terminated given the series of incidents that took place in the past and recently. 

In a letter dated April 19 to BURI’s authorized representative Eldon Uy, DOTr Undersecretary for railways Cesar Chavez said the DOTr would want the firm “to explain within seven days from receipt hereof why subject contract should not be terminated in accordance with the provisions of law and contract on Termination for Convenience and Failure to Satisfactorily Perform Work Obligations.”

Since the start of the year, Chavez said a total of 116 unloading incidents have been recorded.

There were 30 recorded unloading incidents in January, while there were 34 in February and 38 in March. 

For the period of April 1 to 19, a total of 14 unloading incidents took place.

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Last year, there was a total of 586 unloading incidents. 

“Due process requires that we notify them and ask them to explain,” Chavez said in a text message.  

He said the DOTr is considering partial termination because there are four parts to the contract with BURI. 

In particular, it is looking at partial termination of contracts for signaling and general overhaul. 

BURI is a joint venture of Busan Transport Corp., which is owned by the Korean city government of Busan; and local companies Edison Development & Construction, Tramat Mercantile Inc., TMI Corp. and Castan Corp.

It took over MRT-3’s maintenance in January 2016. 

MRT-3 covers North Ave. station in Quezon City until Taft station in Pasay City, and has an average daily capacity of 500,000 passengers. 

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