Mon, Jul 02, 2007 - Page 2 News List

Committee says Far Eastern should still offer OBUs

By Shelley Shan  /  STAFF REPORTER

The Taiwan Area National Freeway Bureau must demand that Far Eastern Electric Toll Collection Co continue offering onboard units (OBU) at NT$680 each, a conclusion reached by an ad hoc committee yesterday said.

The committee, authorized by the bureau to review the freeway electric toll collection (ETC) project, hammered out the conclusion after a nearly five-hour discussion.

Based on the verdict issued by the High Administrative Court in February, Far Eastern's qualification as the best candidate to construct the freeway ETC system was canceled because the court considered the bureau's second-round bid review had neither honored the public interest nor the principle of fairness.

At the time, Far Eastern had agreed that the price for OBUs would temporarily drop from NT$1,180 to NT$680 each.

After the ruling, finalized last August following the Ministry of Transportation and Communications' appeal, the bureau decided to reopen the second round of the review process last December, where three original bidders -- Acer, Yu Tung Technology and Far Eastern -- were asked to re-enter the race.

While Acer declined the invitation and Yu Tung refused to join again, saying the bureau's requirements for the bidders would only benefit Far Eastern.

The committee gave the bureau another month to negotiate other unsettled matters. It also determined that the final decisions the bureau makes with Far Eastern need no further review from the committee.

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