AUSTRALIA: Queensland's Department of Transport & Main Roads has selected the Bombardier NGR Consortium as preferred bidder to supply and maintain 75 six-car electric multiple-units under the New Generation Rollingstock public-private partnership. The EMUs will be used to cater for an increase in passenger services in southeast Queensland and to replace older stock.

The consortium of Bombardier Transportation Australia, John Laing, Itochu Corp and Lloyds Bank's equity investment division Uberior will now finalise details of the PPP contract with the Department of Transport & Main Roads, which is being supported by Projects Queensland. The contract is expected to be signed in December and would run for around 30 years, with testing of the first train to begin in late 2015 and all trains to be in service by December 2018.

The consortium would receive availability-based payments, and be responsible for construction of a purpose-built depot at Wulkuraka in Ipswich. Queensland Rail will provide technical expertise for introduction of the new trains.

'The New Generation Rollingstock project is the largest order of new trains in Queensland and lives up to this government's election promise to deliver better planning and infrastructure,' said state Premier Campbell Newman on November 18.

The AdvanceRail consortium of Mitsubishi Corp and CAF had also bid for the contract.