Oman to float tender for national rail project this month
The Oman Railway Company (ORC) unveiled a list of pre-qualified consortiums to undertake its national railway project on Wednesday, according to a report by theTimes of Oman.
The company said it plans to float a tender, inviting bids from pre-qualified companies for constructing the first package of the 170-km Sohar-Buraimi route this month.
From the 34 prospective bidders, only 18 consortiums have been pre-qualified for civil works, while five other groups led by Alstom, Ansaldo STS, Bombardier, Siemens, and Thales will be competing for the railway systems contracts with the company.
These consortiums are eligible to participate in various tender packages for four years. Pre-qualified consortia will be invited to submit bids before the end of the month.
With this tender, there has been an increased focus on creating more opportunities for local companies, according to earlier statements by the ORC.
“The idea is to maximise the local procurement of services and products and utilise the potential of Omani enterprises as much as possible,” an official at Oman Rail told the Times of Oman in July.
The national railway project, which is 700-kms long and 120-kms wide, is divided into nine segments, including Duqm-Thumrait-Salalah, Sohar Port-Muscat, Al Misfah-Sinaw, Thumrait-Al Mayzouna and Sohar Port-Khatmat Malalah. The whole railway network will have 30 small stations, 10 interim stations, six large stations and eight marshalling yards.
Construction is expected to begin in the first quarter of next year with plans for the project to be operational by 2018. One ready, the network will also connect the Sultanate’s port cities – Sohar, Duqm and Salalah – with other Gulf countries as part of a wider GCC railway project.
The $15.5 billion, 2,177-km-long GCC Rail project will link Oman in the south to Kuwait in the north through the UAE, Qatar, Bahrain and Saudi Arabia. Each of the GCC states will work on an individual link before the common network is connected.