According to the unevaluated opening prices, the local/Chinese joint venture of Gulf Dredging & Contracting, Shaheen Alghanim Roads & Bridges, and China Harbour Engineering Company is the low bidder at KD 115.7 million ($399 million), considerably below the second-best offer of KD 140.3 million ($484 million), submitted by a group of Greece’s Aktor, Geneva-registered Archirodon Construction (Overseas) and the local Mushrif Trading & Contracting.

The scope of works on the contract calls for the construction of a 34-kilometre-long road from the planned port’s location on the east side of Bubiyan to Khor Subiya in the west. The scheme also includes the construction of a 1.4-kilometre-long three-lane road and land bridge from Subiya to Bubiyan, about 4 million cubic metres of landfill, soil improvement works and a railway embankment (MEED 29:4:05).

The contracting process has been beset with problems since the project was first tendered last June, with changes to the client, the scope of works, and unclear tender documents resulting in delays and reduced interest from contractors. Prequalifiers complained that the vague tender documents created undue contractor risk. As a result, the UK’s Mouchel Parkman was brought on board to draw up a conceptual design.