Athens-based Joannou & Paraskevaides (Overseas - J&P)was awarded on 11 August the Salwa and Immigration interchange contracts. Worth a total of QR 363 million ($99.7 million), the contracts are the largest road awards by the Ministry of Municipal Affairs & Agriculture for over a decade. They are also the first construction orders to be let by the ministry under its planned $1,200 million programme to upgrade the state's highway network (MEED 24:5:02, Cover Story; 26:4:02).
The larger of the two contracts is for the Immigration interchange. Valued at QR 204 million ($56 million), it is scheduled to take 16 months to complete. Two other companies - Thailand's CH Karnchang Public Companyand Kuwait's Mohamed Abdulmohsin Kharafi & Sons- were competing for the contract, which was increased in scope by the client with the inclusion of another underpass.
The Salwa interchange contract is valued at QR 161.3 million ($44.3 million) and will take 18 months. Six international companies participated in the tender for which J&P was the low bidder. For both contracts, the ministry has still to appoint consultants to supervise construction.
The awards provide the clearest evidence so far of the ministry's intention to push ahead with its ambitious road construction programme. The opening of commercial bids is imminent on the $190 million Salwa highway upgrade. Prequalification is under way for the $190 million Dukhan highway project and the $330 million North Highway scheme. Finally, a decision is awaited on the Ras Abu Aboud-F ring-road scheme, which represents package 2 on the new Doha International Airport project. J&P was the low bidder for the contract at QR 219 million ($60.1 million) when prices were opened by the Central Tenders Committee in January. Since then, a new committee has been established to implement the airport development (MEED 19:7:02).
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