Saudi Arabia’s General Authority of Civil Aviation (Gaca) is tentatively extending the tender closing date to 2 May for prequalified companies to submit bids for the $1.5bn construction contract for the first phase of Medina International airport.

Companies were initially asked to submit bids by 15 December. The submission date was then extended to 28 February (MEED 2:11:10).

Gaca is likely to award the contract in the summer.

The International Finance Corporation (IFC), part of the Washington-headquartered World Bank is acting as lead adviser on the project.

Gaca prequalified eight groups to submit bids for the contract in June 2010.

The prequalifiers include:

  • Airports Company of South Africa.
  • Turkey’s YDA, Spain’s Aena Desarrollo Internacional, Spain’s OHL Concesiones.
  • The Badr consortium comprised of Integrated Transportation Company, South Korea’s Incheon International Airport Corporation, Central Japan International Airport, South Korea’s Samsung.
  • Local Saudi Binladin Group, France’s Aeroports de Paris Management, France’s Bouygues Batiment International.
  • The Saudi airplex consortium made up of the local El-Seif Engineering Contracting Company, Ontario-based Marshall Macklin Monaghan Group (MMM),US-based Airport Development Corporation & Houston Airport System, and Dubai-based Emirates NBD.
  • Turkey’s Limak Investment, India’a GMR Infrastructure, Turkey’s Mapa Construction.
  • The Tibah consortium comprised of Turkey’s TAV Airports Holding, local Saudi Oger, local Al-Rajhi Holding Group, Athens-based Consolidated Contracting Company.
  • The Saudi-Malaysian consortium comprised of local Bakri International Energy Company, Malaysia Airports Holdings Berhad, local Almabani General Contractors with Italy’s Impregilo SPA and Saudi-Malaysian Riyad Bank.

The first phase of the development of Medina involves building airside and landside facilities at the airport under a long-term concession. Gaca is planning to upgrade and expand the airport to increase its passenger handling capacity to 14 million people a year. Medina airport currently handles just 3.5 million passengers each year.

The expansion is needed to accommodate the large volumes of pilgrims that visit Medina every year during the hajj season.