Sri Lanka: Fresh bids to be called for Bandaranaike International Airport (BIA) development project

The Government is to call for fresh bids for the construction of a new terminal at the Bandaranaike International Airport after the Cabinet decided to cancel the bid from Japan on grounds that it was too high, a senior official said.

Airport and Aviation Service Sri Lanka Ltd Chairman Saman Ediriweera told the Sunday Times that the bid had a difference of 46 percent when compared to the engineer’s estimate. The Cabinet, which considered the proposal, had decided to cancel the bidding process and advised to obtain the concurrence from JICA (Japanese International Cooperation Agency) for rebidding for the US$ 700 million project.

It was also proposed to promote the project as a Public-Private Partnership (PPP). A detailed design for the project was carried out by the Japan Airport Consultants in 2006 at a cost of Rs 340 million, but the project was delayed due to a range of reasons. The bidding process for the Stage Two of the project’s phase II resumed in September/November 2016 in two packages. However only one contractor was found and that too only for one package of the project.

The decision to call fresh bids is now set to delay the construction of the terminal until 2022. Mr Ediriweera said that the present terminal handled more than 10 million passengers annually though it was geared to handle around 6 million

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