IRELAND: The Railway Procurement Agency has shortlisted two tenderers to proceed to the final stage of the procurement competition for the 18 km Metro North light rail line, following the receipt of four bids for the PPP contract in February.

The remaining bidders are Celtic Metro Group and Metro Express. Both consortia include Irish and international partners. Celtic Metro Group comprises Barclays Private Equity, Obrascon Huarte Lain, Mitsui, Soares da Costa, Iridium Concesiones de Infraestructuras SA, CAF and MTR Corp. The MetroExpress consortium is made up of Macquarie Capital, Global Via Infrastructuras, Allied Irish Bank, Bombardier and Transdev/RATP.

Once the PPP conditions have been clarified and the planning application approved, the two bidders will be invited to submit best and final offers. Financial close is expected to take 12 months. Under the PPP, the private sector will finance construction of the project and will be repaid by the RPA via a service availability charge running for 25 years from the commencement of passenger services.

The RPA has applied for the Railway Order which would give it the legal authority to implement the Metro North project. However, the oral hearing planned for April 1 was adjourned until later this year to allow time for a comprehensive review of RPA’s submission. Once the legal powers are approved, the RPA will proceed with enabling works in preparation for the main construction project.

Read more about the Metro North project in the September issue of Metro Report International.