THE Ministry of Transport is expected to award an MRO (maintenance, repair and overhaul) contract worth over RM150 million for six-car set (SCS) trains owned by Keretapi Tanah Melayu Bhd (KTMB).
It is learnt that the contract will be awarded to China's CSR Zhuzhou Electric Locomotive Co (CSR ZELC) Ltd.
This could be the second big win for CSR ZELC this year, which recently won a ministry job worth more than RM500 million to supply 10 units of six-car train sets (ETS) for KTMB.
CSR ZELC is one of the major electric locomotive manufacturers in China and a subsidiary of China South Locomotive & Rolling Stock Corp Ltd.
Three years ago, CSR ZELC inked a RM1.9 billion deal with KTMB to supply 38 sets of custom-built SCS trains.
The SCS trains are to improve commuter service in the Klang Valley under the government's National Key Result Areas initiative for public transportation.
The first consignment arrived in Malaysia in August 2011. Full delivery of the train sets were made by middle of 2012.
As part of the deal, CSR ZELC was awarded an MRO contract for two years for the SCS trains, managed by CKM Sdn Bhd, its 100 per cent- owned company. CKM employs more than 100 people.
The MRO deal, worth RM133 million, is set to expire in February 2014.
Sources close to CSR ZELC said the company is seeking an extension to help boost its presence.
However, the Railwaymen's Union of Malaya (RUM) is against CSR ZELC securing the new contract as it did not comply with the rules and procedures of the offset programme with Might (Malaysian Industry-Government Group for High Technology).
"The deal requires CSR ZELC to transfer expertise and technology to locals, but they have not done that. Only 30 per cent of its staff are Malaysians and doing odd jobs.
"CSR ZELC is now proposing to use a 100 per cent local Bumiputera company, Landas Efektif Sdn Bhd, as a frontier company, with the management and control of the contract fully executed by CSR ZELC," the source said.
The source said KTMB has not been able to carry out the MRO works for the SCS trains as there was no transfer of technology and know-how on maintenance by CSR ZELC.