The Thai government expects to announce contractors for construction of two motorway sections this month after steel price hikes derailed a recent tender process.
The sections are part of the 196km motorway connecting Bang Pa-in district in Ayutthaya with Nakhon Ratchasima in the northeast, according to a report in the Bangkok Post.
The project, costing nearly US$2 billion, is divided into 40 sections, 25 of which are scheduled to be built this year. But the Highways Department has signed only one contractor so far, for construction of a 3.6km section in Saraburi, the Post reported. The department had to cancel the bidding on five sections because the winners — Italian-Thai Development and Nawarat Patanakarn – raised their prices after a 40% rise in steel prices.
The Post quoted unnamed sources in the Highways Department saying discussions failed between the government and two winners to reach a new price, meaning another bidding round will be scheduled. The department is also now revising its own cost estimates for the highway construction.