The corporation is overseeing the overhaul of the Red Sea city’s coastal infrastructure and has set the April deadline for technical and financial bids.

The four consortiums are led by Kuwait’s KGL Investment, Bouygues Travaux Publics of France, Saudi Oger, and Qatar’s United Development Company. The four consortiums have been shortlisted from the original nine groups that expressed interest in the project when tenders were issued in 2008.

The winning bidder will form a 30-year public-private partnership with the Jordanian government to design, build and operate the new port. This will include construction of three terminals for general cargo and roll-on, roll-off ferries.

“We expect to have selected a preferred bidder by early June,” says Imad Fakhoury, chief executive officer of the ADC, speaking at MEED’s Middle East Ports Development 2009 conference in Dubai on 3 February.

The new port is just one part of a larger development programme across the city.

The ADC is due to issue tenders later in the year for a new container terminal, and bids are already under consideration to build a new oil terminal at the site.

Jordan’s Transport Ministry is also preparing to issue tenders for a consultant to plan a new rail network for Jordan, linking the port city with Amman as well as Saudi Arabia, Iraq and Syria.