Monday, 3 July 2017

Hong Kong and UK railway procurement

Eye notes with interest that companies owned by the Chinese state are bidding for HS2 contracts.

Meanwhile, the same Chinese state is adopting an increasingly authoritarian approach towards Hong Kong citizens and has announced it has abandoned the joint declaration with Britain; the 1997 deal which guaranteed Hong Kong’s way of life and granted it a high degree of autonomy until 2047.

As a nation we still have a duty of care to the people of Hong Kong.

Whilst our options may be limited, it would be a great shame if our government rewarded China for this breach of faith with a slice of Britain's railway, or used UK taxes to procure Chinese manufactured equipment for HS2.

Just saying.

UPDATE: This from Howard Wade...

Having insisted on bidders for the West Coast Partnership including experience of high speed operations DfT seems to be taking a generous view of 'high speed' in the case of the Chinese team. 

The 300km/h plus experience of Trenitalia (FirstGroup) and SNCF (Stagecoach/Virgin) contrasts with the 200km/h quoted on the Guangshen Railway web-site.

'But Minister, think of the embarrassment if there were only two bidders for this flagship franchise'.