On May 2 the Gauteng regional government in South Africa announced that two consortia had been shortlisted for the concession to build and operate the Gautrain Rapid Rail Link between Johannesburg, Pretoria and Johannesburg International Airport. The formal prequalification process was launched in February, and 10 bids had been received by the deadline of April 5.
Announcing the shortlist, Gauteng Premier Shilowa said 'we are very satisfied with the two consortia. They have three of the world's best and largest train and railway infrastructure companies involved, some of the largest and best international and South African construction companies and some of the best train operating companies in the world.'
The Bombela Consortium is led by Bombardier and Bouygues Travaux Publics of France, with local civil engineering and construction companies Basil Read (Pty) Ltd, Concor Holdings (Pty) Ltd, Murray & Roberts Ltd and Paris transport authority RATP as operations advisor. The Gauliwe Consortium is led by Alstom (Pty) Ltd, and includes Spanish construction group Dragados Concesiones, South African construction company Grinaker-LTA, and Siemens, with SNCF International as operator.
According to Project Director Jack van der Merwe, both bidders are 'experienced, able and committed organisations, which meet the technical, financial and other requirements'. The next stage of the process will see detailed negotiations, leading to the selection of a preferred bidder by May or June 2003.