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Lithuanian Railways considers to cancel bidding for Rail Baltica segment

Geležinkelio bėgiai
Karinos Sėrikovos/„Tauragės žinios“ nuotr. / Geležinkelio bėgiai
Šaltinis: BNS

Lietuvos Geležinkeliai (Lithuanian Railways, or LG) considers canceling a call for tenders for a 24-kilometer segment of the European-gauge railway Rail Baltica, between Marijampolė and Kazlų Rūda, due to higher-than-expected bids from potential contractors.

Bids came in more than 50 percent higher than the amount of money earmarked for this purpose, the state railway operator said in a press release on Wednesday.

If the bidding process is cancelled, the company will have to launch a new call, thus putting the project of national importance at risk of not being completed on time, it said.

LG spokesman Vidmantas Gudas told BNS that Panevėžio Keliai (Panevėžys Roads), one of Lithuania's biggest road construction companies, had submitted the lowest-price offer of 183.979 million litas (EUR 53.3m), or 222.615 million litas including VAT.

Further down the list were Kauno Tiltai (Kaunas Bridges), the largest road and bridge construction company in the Baltics, with 189 million litas, or 228.69 million litas including VAT, and a consortium of France's Eurovia and its Lithuanian unit, Eurovia Lietuva, with 198.921 million litas, or 240.694 million litas.

It was said earlier that the preliminary value of the contract was around 114 million litas.

As part of the Rail Baltica project, a 7-kilometer European-gauge track section between Šeštokai and Mockava has already been built and a call for tenders was launched in early July for building around 14 kilometers of rail tracks between Mockava and the Polish border.

Lithuania wants to build European-gauge tracks up to Kaunas during the current financial perspective period, by 2014.

Rail Baltica is one of strategic transport links in the Baltic countries.

Citing too high bids, in June 2011 LG cancelled the bidding process for a project, worth over 200 million litas, for building a second track on the Kyviškės-Valčiūnai section of the Vilnius bypass. Much lower bids were submitted when a new tender was launched.

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