SHAH ALAM: Prasarana Malaysia Bhd hopes to add a new Saudi Arabian project into its international projects portfolio by the middle of 2018.
Its president and group chief executive officer Datuk Seri Azmi Abdul Aziz, however, said the group is in the early days of discussions with the Saudi Arabian government.
“We are already present in Saudi through our subsidiary Prasarana Integrated Management & Engineering Services (PRIME), operating Haj train Al Mashaaer Al Mugaddassah Metro-Southern Line (MMMSL),” he said.
“The contract for MMMSL is expiring on May 31 2018 and we are right now in negotiations with the Saudi government to continue it.”
When asked, Azmi did confirm that the group is looking at other infrastructure-related opportunities in Saudi Arabia, but did not disclose details.
“What I can say is that whatever it is, it will be leveraged on our good track record over the last three years of operating the MMMSL.
“We are hopeful that we will be able to announce something substantial from our discussions with the Saudi government, at least by the middle of next year,” he said.
Prasarana had in 2015 clinched the SR800 million (RM911 million) contract for the management and operations of the MMMSL train.
For 2017’s haj season, MMMSL handled some two million passengers as well as recorded a total of 112 per cent in train movement flow. This surpassed the target set by the Saudi Arabian Public Transport Authority.
Azmi earlier witnessed the signing of a memorandum of understanding (MoU) between subsidiary Rapid Rail Sdn Bhd and Universiti Teknologi Mara (UiTM) on human capital, training, academic and, cultural co-operation.
The MoU is valid for three years but may be extended upon agreement by both parties.
Azmi said Rapid Rail had been approached by a French entity for a similar collaboration
“The French company believes that we can support them in training human capital, not just from Malaysia but from Southeast Asia as well to support them.
“We are very grateful of the recognition that we at Prasana are producing some of the best talent in this field, however discussions are still ongoing with them and we hope to find a middle ground soon,” he added.