The remaining 15 of the 40 packages under Qatar’s QR50bn ($14bn) Expressway Programme that are under design or prequalification are expected to be procured using a public tendering process. This is despite the recent award of a negotiated contract for the Al-Khor Expressway project to a Turkish contractor.

“We do not expect any of the remaining packages to be awarded via direct negotiations,” a source familiar with the project tells MEED.

The award of the $2.09bn deal for the construction and maintenance of the 34-kilometre Al-Khor Expressway to Turkey’s Tekfen Construction on 23 August caught the market by surprise. It prompted questions about whether negotiated deals rather than public tendering could become the norm in Qatar.

In June, Qatar’s Public Works Ministry (Ashghal) awarded a $185m extension to the US’ KBR for its programme management consultancy contract for the Expressway Programme.

On 4 September, it awarded a joint venture of Turkey’s Yuksel Insaat and Spain’s Ferrovial Agroman a QR2.87bn ($789m) design-and-build deal for the north section of Al-Bustan Road.

Excluding the Al-Khor Expressway package, some 18 packages of the Expressway Programme worth a total of $13bn are now under construction, according to regional projects tracker MEED Projects. Five packages, collectively worth $874m, have been completed.

Two packages are undergoing bid evaluation. These are the segments between the Duhail intersection on Al-Gharafa Street and the E Ring Road north-south link. They are expected to be awarded in 2016 and 2017 respectively.