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Firms invited to bid for Medina airport expansion

The invitations to bid were originally not expected until September

Plans to expand Prince Mohammed Bin Abdulaziz Airport include the construction of a new passenger terminal and the renovation of the existing runway.
Plans to expand Prince Mohammed Bin Abdulaziz Airport include the construction of a new passenger terminal and the renovation of the existing runway.

Consortiums that previously prequalified to develop Medina airport, KSA, have been invited to bid for work on Phase 1 of the project by Saudi Arabia’s General Authority of Civil Aviation (GACA) – a month earlier than expected.

In June, only eight companies out of 49 prequalified for the US $2.4 expansion project, expecting invitations to bid to work from September.

The first phase, worth US $1.5bn, is one of two set for the project, which is aimed at increasing the Prince Mohammed Bin Abdulaziz Airport’s passenger handling capacity from 3.5 million passengers per year, to 14 million every 12 months by 2016.

Across the two phases, expansion plans for the airport involve the construction of a new passenger terminal as well as the renovation of the existing runway, with the construction of a second runway also possible.

Speaking about the project earlier this year, GACA’s director of business development for domestic airports Alaa Samman told The National newspaper: “We plan to offer a 25-year build, operate and transfer contract for the development of a new airport in Medina.”

As part of a wider $10.5 billion project to reform and liberalise Saudi Arabia’s airport sector, the expansion of Medina airport is being financed through a public-private sector partnership, with the aim of introducing private sector participation.

Among the prequalified consortiums are Airports Company of South Africa, the Badr consortium, Saudi-Malaysian consortium, Tibah consortium, Saudi airplex consortium and another three consortiums made up of well-known Spanish, Turkish, Indian, French and Saudi firms.

Given the premature nature of the invitations to bid, the main contract could be awarded as early as October with a view to starting the work in December.

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