Global players with expertise in railway construction from Europe, China, South Korea, Turkey and India are pre-qualified for the prestigious 2,244-km-long Oman National Railway project.
The Oman Railway Company (ORC), which is responsible for implementing the project and unveiled the list of pre-qualified consortiums yesterday, said it will float a tender inviting bids from pre-qualified companies for constructing the first package of 170-km Sohar-Buraimi route this month.
As many as 18 consortiums have been pre-qualified for civil work and another five for technical systems and these consortiums are eligible to participate in various tender packages for four years, according to the ORC.
The ORC selected 18 prequalified firms from 34 consortiums (constituted by 95 local and international companies) for a design-and-build civil infrastructure and railway track contract, while nine consortiums (formed by 14 local and international firms) submitted bids for pre-qualifying themselves for technology systems.
The pre-qualified consortiums for the civil infrastructure and railway track are FCC Construction SA (leader), Larsen and Toubro Ltd and Khalid bin Ahmed & Sons; Strabag AG (leader), CCC Oman and Samsung E&C; Salini Impregilo Spa; China State Construction Engineering Corporation (leader) and SK E&C; International Contractors Co (leader), China Railway Construction Corporation Ltd and Mohammed Al Kharafi & Sons; Habtor Leighton Middle East (leader), Al Hassan Engineering, Posco E&C and Khimji Ramdas; Societa Italiana Per Condotte D'Acqua Spa (leader), Federici Stirling Batco, SWS Engineering Spa and Itinera Spa; Vinci Construction Grand Projects (leader), Aktor Technical SA and Vinci Construction Terrassement; Porr Bau GmbH (leader), Yuksel Insat, Sarooj Construction Company and Daewoo E&C; Saipem Spa (leader), Rizzani De Eccher Spa and Dogus Insaat; Ircon International Limited (leader), Hani Archirodon and Tata Projects; China Tiesiju Civil Engineering Group Co. Ltd (leader) and China Railway Eryuan Engineering Group Co Ltd; Astaldi Spa (leader), ONEIC, Yapi Merkezi and Corsan-Corviam Construccion SA; Sinohydro Corporation Ltd (leader) and Arabtech Construction; Hyundai Engineering & Construction Co Ltd (leader), Hassan Juma Backer, Assignia Infraestructuras and Maire Tecnimont Civil Construction; Acciona Infraestructuras (leader), Ozkar and Teixeira Duarte Engineer & Constructed; China Railway Engineering Corporation (leader) and Mapa-Gunal Oman and Ferrovial Agroman SA(leader) and Galfar Engineering & Contracting.
The five consortiums that are prequalified for technology systems are Ansaldo STS Spa; Bombardier Transportation Italy Spa (leader) and Sirti Spa; Siemens AG (leader) and Siemens Oman; Thales Deutschland Transportation Systems GmbH (leader) and Thales Oman and Alstom Transporte SA (leader) and Alstom Belgium SA.
The ORC said the consortiums were prequalified by international experts, after evaluating the financial and technical aspects and their experience in executing such railway projects of global standards.
The construction work on Oman national railway project is expected to start by the first quarter of 2015, after selecting a design-and-build contractor for the first segment. The railway project is expected to be operational by 2018 and the railway will connect the Sultanate's port cities – Sohar, Duqm and Salalah – with other GC countries.
The Ministry of Transport and Communications signed three agreements for speeding up the work early this year. Among the three pacts, the first one was signed with Italferr, an Italian engineering firm, for providing consultancy services for preliminary route design.
According to the plan, the 170 km-long Sohar-Buraimi route is the first segment to be implemented. 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.