• Etihad Rail invites project management firms to submit new offers for phase two
  • UAE has also retendered construction packages
  • Project receives backing from UAE vice-president

Etihad Rail has invited consultants to resubmit offers for the project management of the second phase of the UAE’s federal rail network.

The firms that have been invited to participate are understood to include:

  • Aecom (US)
  • Bechtel (US)
  • Fluor (US)
  • Parsons International (US)

The second phase of the Etihad Railway network had previously included a link to Al-Ain that would connect to the Omani rail network, with a link running from Buraimi and onto Sohar. It is understood this section of the railway has now been removed from the second phase.

Etihad Rail retendered the construction contracts for the second phase earlier in June. Contracting consortiums have been invited to submit technical bids for the reduced second phase by 16 July, with commercial offers due on 30 July.

Etihad Rail had been locked in protracted negotiations with two shortlisted contracting groups for the second phase for more than a year. Bids were submitted in November 2012.

The two shortlisted groups were understood to be:

Salini Impregilo (Italy) / Samsung C&T (South Korea) / Tristar (local)

China Railway Construction Company (China ) / Ghantoot Group (local)

The project recently received high-level backing from the federal government.

In an open letter on his website published on 20 June, UAE Vice-President, Prime Minister and ruler of Dubai Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid al-Maktoum said: “We expect to continue to achieve strong growth in 2015, as work continues with a large number of infrastructure projects such as the expansion of national airports, with a total cost of AED100bn, and the construction of the AED40bn Union [Etihad] rail network, in addition to roads and transport projects, improved tourist facilities, electronic infrastructure, real estate and financial services.”

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