Mayan Train Contract Cancellation Affects Seven SubcontractorsBy Fernando Mares | Wed, 09/14/2022 - 16:14
After the federal government decided to terminate the contract with Grupo México and Acciona Infraestructuras for the construction of the Mayan Train’s Section Five, the outlook for subcontractors of these companies became uncertain since there is no information available about the status of their contracts.
In January 2021, the National Fund for Tourism Promotion (FONATUR) announced that the consortium conformed by the Mexico-based Grupo México and Spain’s Acciona won the tender for the construction of the 60km Section Five South. Nonetheless, in July 2022, President López Obrador announced the termination of the contract, after he declared the project a matter of “national security” in an effort to remove it from legal processes that ordered the suspension of works.
In the case of both Grupo México and Acciona, the federal government reached an agreement with the companies and handed over the project to the Ministry of Defense (SEDENA). “We reached a neutral agreement with the government and they declared the project as a national security issue. They handed over the project to SEDENA and Grupo México retreated from its part of the project,” said Francisco Zinser, CEO, Grupo México Infraestructura during a report for 2Q22.
For subcontractors, the situation remains more uncertain. Companies like Terramec Ingeniería de Cimentaciones, Control de Calidad y Geotermia, Analisec, Masyco Laboratorios, EG Consorcio, Elecnor and Favma Construción said that they received letters of intent from the consortium’s companies. Nonetheless, this process had been interrupted, so the private players are now unsure whether SEDENA would contract them or move to find its own contractors.
The participation of subcontractors would be in the project design, installation and conservation of railway electrification systems, quality control of material and foundation works as well as archeological salvation and restoration works. The latter issue became a requirement during the construction of the project, as the developers found an archeological site that the National Institute of Archeology and History (INAH) called Paamul 2.
According to El Sol de México, the consortium’s contract had annexes that specified the required insurance policies to protect contractors, subcontractors and machinery providers, as well as to cover fees or damages that the project could have incurred like legal expenses or environmental damages.
While the situation remains uncertain for the subcontractors, the project’s status as a national security issue is murky as well. On Sept. 2, 2022, MBN reported that the Supreme Court (SCJN) asked the federal government to explain why it labeled the project that way and to hand over the documentation that justifies this status.