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With a portfolio key in the Investment Unit of the Ministry of Finance, 2021W3-N 0001, the Mayan Train, one of the emblematic works of this administration, already has a total cost of 321 thousand 384.8 million pesos, almost 17 thousand 500 million more than initially planned in January of this year.
The project that will have a route of one thousand 502 kilometers, 62 additional kilometers to the design initially planned, already costs more and is, up to now, less profitable.
Information from the National Fund for the Promotion of Tourism and the Treasury shows that the net present value (NPV) of the Train dropped from 206.6 thousand million to 189.9 thousand million pesos, and its Internal Rate of Return (IRR) was adjusted from 21.2% to 19.6% in the last six months.
The modifications to the project made the work more expensive and even, in the last update to the Treasury Investment Unit, last June 17, Fonatur considers that the Mayan Train can support an increase in investment of 256% so that it stops being profitable, “since 352.2 thousand million pesos without VAT -48.4 thousand million pesos more than forecast- would make the VPN zero”, they indicated.
In recent months, the project has been modified both in terms of layout and, recently, in fuel for its operation, as 40% of the route will be electrified.
Initially, Fonatur made an official presentation of the project last January. The public version stated that the investment costs in work, equipment, reinvestment in rolling materials, and operation and maintenance costs for 30 years amounted to 303.8 billion pesos.
In the public version of June 17, Fonatur adjusted the numbers arguing that “the total amount of investment -including the adaptation of the Merida-Cancun highway- will share the right-of-way with Section 4 (Izamal-Cancun), the first significant modification of the works- amounts to 320.6 billion pesos.
The modification of this highway alone has a cost of 9.86 billion pesos. However, the total amount differs from that reported by the SHCP on the Budget Transparency page by 321.4 billion pesos.
Not including electrification
This new revision of the total investment cost of the significant work does not include what it may cost to electrify 40% of the Train’s route, which would initially use UBA diesel for its operation, taking into account that it will be necessary to develop the basic engineering and incorporate the infrastructure such as posts, cabling, and catenaries – auxiliary structures that will support the cables.
The sections of the Merida-Cancun-Chetumal route will be electrified, that is, 690 kilometers of road, including double tracks for multiple services using hybrid (diesel-electric) and electric trains.
These can operate in their electric mode and the middle of the track change modes and turn on the diesel-electric engine for unwired stretches: “In the future, hydrogen-powered locomotives could be used,” adds Fonatur.
This article first appeared on www.theyucatantimes.com
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