Gamuda to sign PTMP PDP agreement in ‘next few weeks’

This article first appeared in The Edge Financial Daily, on December 6, 2019.
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KUALA LUMPUR: Gamuda Bhd expects to sign a project delivery partner (PDP) agreement for the Penang Transport Master Plan (PTMP) in the “next few weeks”, and to award the first package of light rail transit (LRT) work by middle of next year, according to managing director Datuk Lin Yun Ling.

“Once the PDP agreement is signed, the design works will start, from LRT to the first [man-made] island, or what we call Island A, and Pan Island Link, and reclamation work for South Island will all move. We expect by middle of 2020, the first package of LRT will be awarded.

“My guess [for the signing of the PDP agreement] is next few weeks,” he told reporters at a press conference after the group’s annual general meeting yesterday.

Lin said the group’s priority would be Island A in Penang South Island, which is planned for a 800-acre (323.74ha) smart industrial park, targeting the electrical and electronic sector.

Potential tenants are very clear on what they want in terms of facilities, which quite often relates to software services that they want Gamuda to put in place, he said.

On Putrajaya’s proposed acquisition of four toll highways from Gamuda, Lin said the group is still waiting for a decision from the government, but observed the decision would hinge on whether the government agrees to sell the highway concession held by PLUS Malaysia Bhd.

“They will have to make a decision about the PLUS highway sale. That will be decided first, because it will not be very consistent or they will not look consistent.

“Because on the one hand they sell PLUS to private sector and on the other hand they buy the four highways from [the] private sector. So, I think they have to cross that bridge first.”

Lin said if the divestment of the four highways materialises, the group would make a one-off special dividend to shareholders, but declined to quantify the potential amount.

“Part of it (the proceeds) obviously will go to pay a one off or special dividend to shareholders and that’s all we can say. We don’t even have a deal signed with the government yet. We are not in the habit of counting our chicken before they are hatched.”