Kuwait pushes back deadline for national rail project

Applications will now be accepted until a date in the second quarter



Kuwait’s Authority for Partnership Projects has announced an extension to the deadline for applications to take part in its national rail project.

Kuwait Times reports that the authority has decided to push back the deadline from the first quarter to the second quarter.

It said KAPP justified the delay by saying it was busy contracting technical, legal and financial advisors for the project since late 2016.

The project comprises six packages including design, construction, funding and maintenance for infrastructure, routes, a railway system, terminals and operating a rail cargo firm.

The preferred bidder was expected to be announced in Q3 with a financial close in Q4, but this is now also likely to be delayed.

Read: Kuwait to issue national rail network tender in 2017

Kuwait’s planned national rail network will link Kuwait City to the airport, marina ports and the Saudi border over 511km of two-way track.

It is expected to be implemented under a build, operate, transfer agreement and will transport both passengers and cargo at speeds of 120-200kmh.

Other regional rail projects have also faced delays in light of lower government oil revenues including the second phase of the UAE’s Etihad Rail network.

Read: UAE’s Etihad Rail suspends phase two of nationwide network

In light of these delays, plans for a wider GCC rail network connecting the Gulf countries have been pushed back until 2021.

Read: New 2021 Gulf rail deadline a “moving target” – UAE minister