NHAI Extends Deadline For Bids For Third Tranche Of Highways Under  Toll, Operate And Transfer Model
Workers laying tar on a national highway in India. (Photographer: Amit Bhargava/Bloomberg News)

NHAI Extends Deadline For Bids For Third Tranche Of Highways Under Toll, Operate And Transfer Model

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The NHAI, which is eyeing an estimated Rs 4,995 crore from monetisation of third bundle of highway assets, has extended the deadline for receiving bids by a month on demand from investors, its Chairman NN Sinha said.

It plans to monetise nine highway stretches totalling 566.27 km in Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Jharkhand and Tamil Nadu in the third tranche under Toll, Operate and Transfer model.

We have received requests from many investors for extending the date. We will extend the Expression of Interest submission deadline by a month to October.
NN Sinha, Chairman, NHAI sidelines of a conference organised by Assocham

He said the fourth bundle of projects to be monetised is also ready and will be launched before the completion of the third round. The National Highways Authority of India had invited bids for the third tranche on June 13 with bid due date of Sept. 11 having an Initial Estimated Concession Value of Rs 4,995.48 crore.

The first tranche had a total of nine stretches involving 681 km and was awarded to Macquarie, whose bid stood at Rs 9,682 crore, 55 percent higher than NHAI's expectation of Rs 6,258 crore IECV.

The third auction is significant as it comes after an unsuccessful second one wherein investors quoted a discount to NHAI's base price following which it was cancelled. The NHAI chairman also said four financial bids have been received for Z-Morh tunnel project in Jammu & Kashmir.

The National Highways and Infrastructure Development Corporation has earlier foreclosed concession agreement for Z-Morh tunnel project and fresh tenders were invited with Aug. 1, 2019 as the last date for submission of bids.

The project was earlier allotted to Infrastructure Leasing & Financial Services but the contractor abandoned it after IL&FS Group started facing financial crisis.

"The Z-Morh tunnel project was awarded on BOT (annuity) basis with concession period of 20 years including 5 years of construction period. But, due to financial crisis of IL&FS group of companies, the concessionaire stopped all work with effect from July 20, 2018," the government had said earlier.

The project was re-tendered in June. The Z-Morth tunnel would provide all-weather road connectivity to Sonamarg tourist spot which mostly remains closed during winter due to heavy snowfall in Gagenger area.

Earlier, addressing the conference on "Contracting Trends & Technology in Underground Construction", Sinha said there are over 1,000 tunnels in India with an estimated length of 2,800 km including 2000 km completed tunnel projects.

He said the NHIDCL was mulling building a 600-metre long tunnel in Jammu & Kashmir on Norweigian tunnel method.

Also read: NHAI Identifies Highway Projects To Be Built Under Public-Private Partnership Model

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