817 - Hızlı tren - Steve Hobson

Why best offer didn’t win in HST tender?


Siemens, having the second best offer, is awarded for the HST tender.Siemens’ offer was € 349 mn, including 10 HST sets, simulator, maintanance and spare parts. This tender was € 80 mn more than CAF’s offer, which is € 273 mn. How this happened and the best offer could not win the tender?

TCDD had opened this 10-sets-tender 3 years ago. That tender has many similarities with the today’s tender.

What happened in 2014 HST tender?

Two companies gave offer for the 10-HST-sets tender in 2014, Alstom and Siemens. Best offer was from Alstom, € 80 mn better than Siemens, similar to this one. However, Alstom’s offer was rejected, due to missing document, and Siemens was announced as winner.

Alstom objected the result. The missing document was told to be nondecleration of a group company in subcontractor list. Alstom also claimed that the energy consumption values of Siemens is unrealistic and tender with only one offer would not be able to ensure competition.

None of these objections were accepted.

However, the tender was cancelled completely. Siemens’ offer was rejected due to a missing WC certificate, thus no valid offer was left in the tender.

Turkey had lost € 80 mn due to nondecleration of one company name in the list and had lost 3 years due to a missing WC certificate.

What happened in new HST tender?

Two reasons stated about rejection of CAF’s offer.

One is again a missing document. The missing document is one of the leading criterias in current public tender legislation causing many rejections. Most of the time, companies are rejected for the reasons which can be corrected very easily. Sometimes this issue even ties the hands of the tender committee, and surely does not help choosing the best option.

Other reason is more commercial and understandable. CAF’s new Oaris sets has unveiled in 2010, homologated in 2013, got the first order in 2015 and yet has not started commercial service.

This criteria of “having been used in an other country” is of course decreases the risks, but is not the only option. An alternative approach was shown recently by Brazil. Before opening the tender for the line between Rio de Janerio and Sao Paulo, Brazil completed the homologation of candidate sets, thus decided which HST sets can attend the tender.

Is this tender legislation in favour of Turkey?

Current tender legislation seems choosing the best documentation before the best product.

Whereas, selection must first focus on the best technology used; convenience with conditions in Turkey and current rolling stock fleet; lower procurement, maintanance and energy costs; local production ratio. Some of the criterias may not be quantitative, it’s enough to be qualitative and can be expressed commercially or technically.

Don’t you think we need to give up loosing millions or years due to nondeclared company names or missing WC certificates?

Cover Photo: Steve Hobson ©

Written by Onur Uysal

Railway consultant. Owner of RT Media & Consultancy. Founder and editor of Rail Turkey.

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