Kuwait’s Public Works Ministry has received bids from four groups for the marine engineering works contract on its planned port on Bubiyan Island.

The low bidder is a consortium of Kuwait’s United Gulf Construction Company with South Korea’s Hyundai Engineering & Construction Company which submitted a price of KD328m ($1.14bn).

The second placed bidder was a team of Geneva-registered Archirodon Construction Overseas with the local Mushrif Trading & Contracting Company. The group offered a price of KD345m.

The other groups competing for the contract were a consortium of Kuwait’s Combined Group Contracting Company with Belgium’s Jan de Nul and Tadamon Company and STFA Marine, both of Turkey, with a bid of KD404m; and Kuwait Arab Contractors with Egypt’s Arab Contractors with a price of KD456m.

The design-and-build contract covers the construction of a container terminal, four berths and a 1,300-metre-long quay wall, as well as port buildings and utilities, digging and soil improvement work, and site levelling (MEED 23:12:09).

The ministry plans to tender a contract for dredging work at the port later in 2010.

The bidding is the latest sign that development of the port is accelerating after three years of slow progress.

The ministry originally planned to open the port in 2010 after a local/Chinese consortium of Gulf Dredging & Contracting, Shaheen al-Ghanim Roads & Bridges and China Harbour Engineering Company started work on the KD115.7m first-phase construction contract in late 2006.

This contract involved the construction of a 34-kilometre-long road and bridge to the port.