Construction delays and cost overruns on the Hong Kong link of a national high-speed railway project do not mean that MTR Corporation (00066.HK) has failed to act diligently on the venture, the local rail operator’s chief executive said on Wednesday.
Appearing before a Legco panel meeting, Lincoln Leong, however, apologized for waiting until April last year to give an updated assessment of the project schedule.
The comments came as some lawmakers have demanded that the company be held accountable for the rail project going out of schedule and over-budget.
Leong said labor issues and some problems related to soil conditions affected the project.
The work is now about 70 percent complete, though there are still some matters to be resolved in the construction of a canopy at the West Kowloon Terminal.
Pricing issues were believed to have dragged that work.
Leong did not respond when a lawmaker wondered aloud as to what penal action should be taken against MTR for the delays in the high-speed rail link venture.
He also did not comment on the issue of who should bear the additional costs — the company or the government.
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