Regional subcontractors prepare for Iraq call-up

11 April 2003
Regional construction firms look set to play a prominent role in the US' programme of reconstruction work in post-war Iraq after a handful were nominated as subcontractors by successful bidders on the planned US Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) programme. Firms from Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Turkey and Iraq feature on the list of subcontractors that formed part of the tender submissions of the three successful US bidders. USACE awarded on 1 April the three 'contingency' contracts, which are each worth up to $300 million (MEED 4:4:03).

Idaho-based Washington Grouphas nominated two Saudi companies, Al-Hejailan Groupand Al-Babtain Industries Company,Kuwait's Mohamed Abdulmohsin Kharafi & Sons, 'several consortia' in Turkey and 'a concern in Iraq' as subcontractors on its one-year USACE prime contract. Other nominated subcontractors include Balfour Beattyand Costain, both of the UK, and the US' Stanley Group.

Contrack International, the US affiliate of Egypt's Orascom Construction Industries, is named as the exclusive subcontractor to another USACE main contractor, Fluor Intercontinental. Fluor has also named the US' Black & Veatch (B&V) as its exclusive design engineeron the contract. It is understood that Fluor will carry out oil, process and industrial work required by USACE, Contrack will undertake civil construction work and B&V will provide the design engineering.

Perini Corporation, which has the third of the USACE contracts, named several companies 'with which it has long-standing alliances' as possible subcontractors. However, a spokesman declined to identify the firms, adding that it would depend on which tasks USACE asked Perini to perform.

USACE has awarded the Washington Group, Fluor Intercontinental and the Perini Corporationthe three indefinite duration/indefinite quantity (ID/IQ) contingency contracts. It says the contracts, which each have a guaranteed minimum value of $500,000 and a maximum value of $100 million, are for 'anticipated' urgent construction work in its Central Command area of operations, which includes Iraq and Afghanistan.

The contractors join giant US engineering firm Halliburton KBR, which was awarded the only other current USACE ID/IQ contract - to implement a contingency plan it developed for the US Department of Defense in mid-March. It is responsible for assessing and extinguishing oil well fires in Iraq, evaluating and, if required, repairing and operating oil infrastructure (see Power & Water, page 18; MEED 28:3:03).

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