Qatar Rail could award the operation and maintenance (O&M) contract for the first phase of the Doha Metro and Lusail tramway network by September, according to sources familiar with the transaction.

The client, Qatar Railway Company (Qatar Rail), received bids for the contract in November last year.

The firm indicated last year that it intends to award the contract before end of 2017.

Six firms were prequalified for the contract in early 2016. They are:

  • MTR Corporation (Hong Kong)
  • Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI) (Japan) / West Japan Railway Company (JR West) / Mitsubishi Corporation (Japan)
  • Serco (UK)
  • Transdev (France)
  • RATP Dev (France) / Keolis (France)
  • Arriva (UK) / DB International (Germany)

It is not clear if all six firms submitted a proposal.

Qatar Rail’s managing director and CEO Abdulla al-Subaie had indicated earlier this month that they expect to receive four rolling stock trains before the end of the year.

The trains will be tested on the 4km trackwork railway test section along the Doha Metro Red Line, which is understood to have reached 95 per cent completion rate last month.

A consortium comprising Japan’s Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Mitsubishi Corporation, Hitachi, and Kinki Sharyo along with France’s Thales won the $3.25bn systems, rolling stock and track work for the Doha Metro in 2015.

Firms are currently preparing to submit by 1 October their proposal for the extension of Doha Metro’s Green Line.