January 26, 2015 / 1:45 AM / 6 years ago

Mexico says will follow agency opinions to rejig train tender

MEXICO CITY, Jan 25 (Reuters) - Mexico’s government on Sunday said it would heed most of the recommendations from the country’s antitrust watchdog which had warned some aspects of a new tender to build a high-speed train system would hinder fair competition.

The Communications and Transport Ministry said it would follow 21 of 23 recommendations made Friday by the Federal Competition Commission, which argued that some clauses of the new tender would favor “some participants.”

The ministry said it objected to an opinion on requirements for domestic construction content and one on materials, but accepted the rest of the non-binding opinions “to achieve the greatest possible transparency and competition.”

A scandal touching President Enrique Pena Nieto blew up around a previous contract late last year.

China Railway Construction Corp (CRCC) and a group of Mexican partners won the tender to build the $3.75-billion rail line in November.

However, the contract was almost immediately revoked and one of CRCC’s Mexican partners sparked concerns of a conflict-of-interest after reporters revealed the company built a home for the president’s family and had won other big contracts.

Last week, authorities revealed fresh preliminary bid terms for the train project which will link Mexico City with the wealthy, industrial city of Queretaro.

Reporting by Michael O'Boyle; Editing by Chris Reese

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