A consortium led by the National Bank of Abu Dhabi (NBAD) has won a contract to provide consultancy work for the KD500m ($1.8bn) development of Failaka Island in Kuwait.

NBAD will now lead the consortium in assessing the masterplan and carrying out the technical and feasibility studies on how to offer the project to bidders. This stage is expected to take just over two years to complete.

The government-run Partnerships Technical Bureau (PTB) received bids from five consortiums for the advisory contract in November 2010 (MEED 1:12:10).

Kuwait’s Public Works Ministry is planning to transform the 43-square-kilometre island of Failaka, which lies 20 kilometres east of Kuwait City, into a major tourism and leisure resort. This involves the construction of infrastructure, a waterfront development with chalets, hotels, a new marina and a jetty.

Kuwait first decided to develop the island in 2003, but the project was severely delayed following an investigation carried out by the state audit bureau into construction contract awards in Kuwait in 2008.

The development of Failaka Island is part of the PTB’s wider public-private partnership (PPP) programme that comprises 32 projects worth $28bn.