International and local companies have purchased prequalification applications from the Civil Aviation Authority for the project to build a new terminal at Sharm el-Sheikh airport, in South Sinai. The project is to be carried out on a build-operatetransfer (BOT) basis. The documents were priced at $1,000 each (MEED 11:8:00).

Interested companies have been invited to a site visit on 25 October, and are due to submit their prequalification bids on 15 November. The target is to invite bids from prequalified groups towards the end of 2000, with a deadline in early February.

Transport officials earlier this year said the project’s investment costs would be some $400 million. It will involve expanding the airport’s capacity to 10,000 passengers an hour from 1,200 at present.

Company officials assessing the scheme say a key element will be the extent to which the contractor will be entitled to develop facilities around the airport. ‘If we have to rely solely on fees deriving from tourist traffic, I doubt that the project will be financially viable, ‘ says one contractor.

Two BOT airport projects are now underway, at Marsa Alam (see Construction) and El-Alamein, and the UK’s Malicorp is poised to sign a final contract for the third, at Ras Sudr (Aviation, MEED Special Report, 2:6:00). All three schemes involve the developer being allocated substantial areas of land adjacent to the airport.