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[Press Release] Limited Tender for Thomson-East Coast Line Operator Licence in 1Q2017
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Limited Tender for Thomson-East Coast Line Operator Licence in 1Q2017, with a Pilot Framework to Encourage Outperformance in Key Areas
News Releases 4 Nov 2016

1. Construction of the Thomson-East Coast Line (TEL) is progressing well and on track to complete in stages starting 2019. The Land Transport Authority (LTA) will conduct a limited tender for the TEL Operator Licence in 1Q2017.

Framework for the TEL Operator Licence

2. The TEL is our most complex rail project to date. First, it will be developed in tandem with multiple other projects. On its northern end, it will have an interchange with the future Johor Bahru-Singapore Rapid Transit System Link. On its eastern end, feasibility studies are on-going for a connection with the future Changi Airport Terminal 5 and the existing Changi Airport MRT station. Second, the TEL will open in five stages over a number of years. This is so that commuters who live along the TEL can benefit from it as soon as each phase is completed, rather than waiting for the entire line to be ready.

3. All this places the TEL in a unique situation where projection of ridership and fare revenues in the initial years will be much more uncertain and challenging than earlier train lines. The New Rail Financing Framework (NRFF), where tenderers share fare revenue and cost risks with the Government and bid on the licence charge for the right to operate the train line, may therefore result in bids which are unfavourable to the Government, as the tenderers may factor in a significant risk premium.

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