On 31st August 2012, Friday, there was a Straits Times article entitled, “Massive Construction Boom On The Horizon”. The article announced that at least $55 billion worth of construction projects is currently being undertaken or will be undertaken until 2021. Two of the more significant road projects are the $4.3 billion Marina Coastal Expressway and the $8 billion North South Expressway. Industry experts said the projects will cause a spike in demand for and costs of engineering expertise, foreign workers, building materials and equipment. Mr Or Toh Wat, the Group Managing Director of OKP Holdings, was interviewed in the article and he said that OKP has hired more people and added to its inventory of equipment in preparation for new contracts. He added that the coming years will be the busiest the industry has been since the last construction boom from 2007 to 2010 (when the two Integrated Resorts were built). The major road projects are as follows (some of them are already under construction):
- 5km Marina Coastal Expressway: $4.3 billion, ready by the end of 2013
- New underpass and widening of roads in Kallang: $254 million, ready by 2014
- Road tunnel linking Sentosa to the mainland, widening of surrounding roads: $537 million, ready in 2015
- Interchange connecting three expressways and the Seletar Aerospace Park: $255 million, ready in 2015
- Major arterial road from the Central Expressway to Yishun Avenue 6: $354 million, ready in 2015
- 21.5km North-South Expressway: between $7 billion and $8 billion, ready in 2020
The major rail projects are as follows (some of them are already under construction):
- 42km Downtown Line: $20.7 billion, ready in stages from 2013 to 2017.
- 1km North-South Line extension to Marina Bay: $357.5 million, ready in 2014.
- 7.5km Tuas West extension on the East-West Line: $3.5 billion, ready in 2016.
- 30km Thomson Line: $18 billion, ready in stages from 2019 to 2021.
In my opinion, the infrastructure boom certainly bodes well for OKP. I hope there will be opportunities for OKP to form joint ventures with major companies involved in rail construction to expand their revenue base. OKP have never undertaken a rail project so far. However, competition is intense in the rail projects segment since foreign companies from China, South Korea and Japan frequently bid for such projects. Many of the Downtown Line stations are currently being constructed by foreign firms.