Decision Delayed for Mayan Train’s Fifth SegmentThu, 09/03/2020 - 18:23
FONATUR has emitted a press release stating that the final decision that could be expected this week regarding the contractor in charge of the Mayan Train’s fifth segment will not be arriving until Sept. 8 because it needs more time to evaluate the economic proposal of the one bid that was made. So far, only one proposal has been presented by the consortium made by Greenfield SPV VIII, BlackRock Mexico Infraestructura, PRODEMEX Construcciones, Promotora y Desarrolladora Mexicana, Promotora y Desarrolladora Mexicana de Infraestructura y Constructora de Infraestructura Nacional. This segment will run 121km in the state of Quintana Roo, from the city of Cancun to the township of Tulum, making it one of the most transited train routes due to the enormous influx of tourism that these two locations receive.
The contract contemplates the rehabilitation of existing rail lines and the rehabilitation of the adjacent 307 federal highway. If possible, the contract in question is to be signed seven days after this decision is made, assuming it is accepted by the contractor in question. The contract will also contemplate the operation and maintenance of both the highway and rail line segments for a duration of 18 years.
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President Labels Mayan Train Political Groups as Opposition
President López Obrador claimed that NGOs and other civil and media organizations that were criticizing the Mayan Train project were being motivated to do so by political groups that provided them with funding for this explicit reason and purpose. The president claimed that he possessed information not only confirming this fact, but also confirming that some of those groups and funding sources were foreign. According to presidential spokesperson Jesús Ramírez Cuevas, the political groups funding this criticism by making contributions to these organizations and media outlets include the Ford Foundation, the Kellogg Foundation, the Rockefeller Foundation, the National Endowment for Democracy (NED) and Climate Works. Ramírez Cuevas even claimed that NED, which is technically listed as a private and nonprofit foundation, is an offshoot of the US State Department.
AMLO Sticks to Health Problems Story on Toledo
President López Obrador insisted in his Wednesday daily morning press conference that SEMARNAT former head Víctor Manuel Toledo resigned due to health problems and that he will return to his academic activities as an UNAM researcher. “Víctor Manuel Toledo resigned as Minister of the Environment. He is an honest person, a top of the line professional, but he is in poor health,” he said. Two weeks ago, Toledo harshly criticized inconsistencies in the federal administration in a leaked audio. The president said María Luisa Albores will leave her position as Minister of Welfare to assume SEMARNAT’s leadership, a decision that makes sense since she is also an environmentalist. No mention has been made of the requests sent to SEMARNAT to stop the Mayan Train project.
Border Infrastructure to Be Normalized: AMLO
During today’s daily morning press conference, President López Obrador said that the situation at the US border is normalizing in the face of COVID-19. “The effect of the pandemic in the US as well as in our country is decreasing, a little bit, but it has been decreasing,” he noted. On Aug. 13, SRE leader Marcelo Ebrard announced an extended restriction on non-essential travel “until September,” after five months with only trade and emergencies being carried out through border transit.
INE Needs to Prepare Presidential Prison Sentence Consultation: AMLO
During Wednesday’s daily morning press conference, President López Obrador asked the Electoral Institute (INE) to get ready because there will be a public consultation on prosecuting former presidents. “They must prepare because there will be a citizen consultation to bring former presidents to trial. If the people want a consultation, then the people will decide,” he said. Regarding a recent INE request for more funds, López Obrador said the agency must “tighten their belts, find a way to do more with less and save.”