Kuwait’s General Directorate for Civil Aviation (DGCA) has cancelled the invitation to prequalify to South Korea’s GS Engineering & Construction and one of its consortium partners, Spain’s Constructuras San Jose, for the contract to design and construct a new runway at the Kuwait International Airport (KIA).

The cancellation was announced less than two weeks prior to the submissions deadline scheduled for 19 April.

The third member of the South Korean-led consortium, local United Gulf Construction Company, is to join another consortium that consists of China Huashi Enterprises and UAE’s Copri Construction, subject to the international company’s compliance with the percentage of works prescribed in the prequalification document.

 The amended list of prequalified groups now include:

  • Larsen & Toubro (India) / Alghanim International General Trading & Contracting (local)
  • Avic International Holding Corporation (China) / Hot Engineering & Construction (local)
  • Acciona (Spain) / Mushrif Trading and Contracting (local)
  • China Communication Construction Company / KCC Engineering & Contracting (local)
  • Sacyr Construction (Spain) / Grupo Isolux Corsan (Turkey) / Combined Group Contracting (UAE)
  • Al-Naboodah Contracting (UAE) / Ahmadiah Contracting & Trading (Kuwait)
  • China Railway No.2 Engineering Group / Mapa Construction (Turkey) / Canar Trading & Construction (local)
  • China Huashi Enterprises / Copri Construction Enterprises (UAE) /United Gulf Construction Company (local)
  • IC Ictas Construction (Turkey) / Astaldi (Italy) / First Kuwait General Trading (local)
  • Gengiz Insaat Ve Ticaret (Turkey) / Kuwaiti System General Trading & Contracting (local)

In addition to the construction of a new runway, the tender also calls for the upgrade and widening of the airport’s existing eastern runway.

The runway projects comprise a key segment of package 3, phase 1 of KIA’s expansion programme. Other segments of the package include taxiways, an air traffic control system, access roads and utilities, which are excluded in this specific tender.

The Kuwait government is understood to have allocated $6bn for the development and expansion of the KIA. The largest of these projects, the $4.3bn Terminal 2, was supposed to have been awarded in late 2015. The contract award has been delayed due to additional government review following allegations of administrative and financial irregularities in the award process.

If awarded and completed, Terminal 2 will double the airport’s existing capacity to 13 million passengers a year.

A passenger support building, with a capacity to handle 4.5 million passengers, is also awaiting award. A joint venture of Turkey’s Cengiz Insaat Sanayi Ve Ticareta and local First Kuwaiti General Trading & Contracting (FKTC) submitted a low bid of KD52.8m ($174m) for the contract in December. It will support the existing Terminal 1 until Terminal 2 becomes operational by 2020. The tender specifies that the passenger support building is to become operational within 450 days, or about 15-18 months, from the date of contract signing.