KUWAIT: Expressions of interest in a public-private partnership contract to supply rolling stock and railway systems for the Kuwait Metropolitan Rapid Transit System Project are to be invited shortly, the government's Partnerships Technical Bureau announced on February 19.

The contract will cover the supply of trains and railway systems for the planned five phases of the metro project.

Separate contracts are to be let for civil works and the operation of Phase 1, which includes approximately 50 km of metro with 28 stations, around a third of which will be underground. PTB also plans to award a contract for system integration, and will appoint four infrastructure PPP companies for the subsequent phases which will expand the network to 160 km and 69 stations, 11 of which will be underground.

Procurement is being undertaken by the Ministry of Communications through PTB, which has appointed Ernst & Young, Ashurst and Atkins to undertake feasibility studies and prepare procurement.

PTB has recommended that the financing structure includes a government subsidy owing to the size and strategic importance of the project, which it said forms a key aspect of the state's strategy to address the challenges of population growth and the current lack of public transport.