The 13-month consultancy contract has two phases. The first phase, expected to take eight months to complete, will include a feasibility study, which will look at ways of financing the project and suggested options for the award of the project on a build-operate (BO) basis. It will also include environmental studies.

The second phase will cover preliminary designs, engineering, site investigations and studies on the flow of traffic from Kuwait City to the causeway.

The project forms part of plans to develop a new city at Subiya to be linked to Kuwait City by a causeway across Kuwait bay. This will reduce the distance between the two sites to 22 kilometres from 130 kilometres (MEED 16:10:98).

In early October, the government announced the allocation of $925 million for the project. The construction period will be about three years, starting in late 2003 (MEED 12:10:01).

Plans for the construction of another causeway, linking the west coast of Qatar to eastern Bahrain, are at an advanced study phase. The study is being conducted by the same group (MEED 26:10:01).