Kuwait’s Public Works Ministry has invited contractors to submit bids for an estimated $500m hospital project.

Contractors have until 16 September to submit bids for the main construction contract to build the 600-bed Maternity Hospital, which will be located opposite the existing maternity hospital in the Al-Sabah district of Kuwait.

The project is part of Kuwait’s plans to expand its healthcare infrastructure to cope with its rapidly growing population. Kuwait’s population is expected to rise from the current 3.7 million to 5.4 million by 2030.

The Public Works Ministry is already overseeing the construction of the $1.1bn Jaber al-Ahmed al-Sabah Hospital in Surra, a district in Kuwait City. A joint venture of the Kuwait Arab Contractors Company and Egypt’s Arab Contractors (Osman Ahmed Osman & Company) was awarded the main construction contract for the 1,050-bed hospital in late 2009. The hospital is scheduled for completion in December 2013.

In addition to the Public Works Ministry’s projects, Kuwait’s Health Ministry is currently undertaking a programme to expand existing hospitals and build new medical centres.

In June, the ministry approved the award of an estimated KD173m ($617.5m) contract to the local Alghanim International General Trading & Contracting to build the Kuwait Cancer Centre in the Sabah area of Kuwait. The cancer centre will contain 600 beds and its main function will be for diagnosis to complement an existing hospital for cancer treatment.

In April, the ministry awarded a KD98.1m contract to the local Associated Construction Company for the main construction package on the project to expand the Al-Amiri hospital.