EXCLUSIVE: Firms submit bids for Etihad rail package

02 April 2018
The 264-kilometre first stage of the Etihad Rail network has been operational since 2015

Teams comprising consultancy firms have submitted bids for the project and construction management (PM/CM) contract for the next stage of the federal Etihad Rail network.

MEED understands the deadline for the engineering design contract, which covers stage 2 and stage 3 of the network, has been extended to 7 May.

Etihad Rail issued requests for proposals (RFPs) for both contracts in February.

Consultancy firms that are understood to have been invited to bid for the contracts include:

  • Aecom (UK)
  • Arup (UK)
  • Atkins (UK)
  • CH2M / Jacobs Engineering (US)
  • Egis (France)
  • Parsons (US)
  • Systra (France)
  • WSP (Canada)

MEED has yet to confirm the alignment of firms that submitted or are planning to submit a bid for the contracts.

Construction work for stage 2 of Etihad Rail was tendered before and cancelled. The project is expected to move ahead this time after the UAE Cabinet approved the country’s first railway law that provides the basis for the future development of the country’s railway infrastructure.

In addition to specifying safety standards, the legislation aims to encourage private sector participation in the financing and provision of operation and management services for the country’s railway sector.

The 264-kilometre first phase of the 1,200km Etihad Rail network has been operational since late 2015.

Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (Adnoc) is the offtaker for the railway’s first stage, which is used mainly to transport granulated sulphur from Shah and Habshan to the Mirfa depot in Ruwais, from where it is being exported.

Stage 2 will extend the line from Ruwais to Abu Dhabi’s Mussafah area and Khalifa Port and onward to Dubai’s Jebel Ali Port.

This alignment is consistent with using the rail to improve internal connectivity of trade and logistics, as confirmed by UAE Infrastructure Development Minister Abdulla Belhaif al-Nuaimi.

Stage 3 is expected to link Dubai and Abu Dhabi to the northern emirates.

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