Thailand eyes projects in India
With Malaysian construction companies tasting success in India, their counterparts in Thailand are now keen to explore the subcontinent. The Thai commerce ministry hopes to garner $227 million in 2002 from global exports of construction services as against $189 million in 2001. Thailand is eyeing an export growth potential of $2.2 billion. Thai construction companies are currently undertaking projects worth $1 billion in foreign locations. Backed by the Thai government, representatives of these companies have established base in India, Bhutan, Bahrain, Pakistan, Cambodia, Philippines and other Asian countries to bid for various projects. One such company has bagged a $9 million contract in Bhutan for construction of a convention centre. The Thai Federation of Design and Construction is bidding for the $180-million contract for construction of athletic villages in Qatar for the 2006 Asian Games.
Sri Lanka opens up petroleum market
The Government of Sri Lanka has liberalised its petroleum market. With this Ceylon Petroleum Corporation will no longer enjoy a monopoly over the market. Colombo is in talks with IOCL to lease and develop a World War II relic oil storage tank farm in the north-eastern port district of Trincomalee. There are totally 99 tanks and only 10 are currently used by CPC. Sri Lanka will also open up telecom and insurance sectors this year.
Road reconstruction in Afghanistan
Afghanistan's interim government is likely to commence the development of the road network in the war-ravaged country after the 'grand tribal assembly' meeting scheduled from June 10-16. This conference will decide on the new government in the country. International tenders will be issued for repairs to major highways that were destroyed in the war.
The international community has donated $100 million for redevelopment of 1,200 km of roads. This outlay will form a part of the $4.5 billion reconstruction programme finalised by international donors. Afghanistan requires a total of $375 million to develop 3,700 km of highways. The road linking Jalalabad, near the Pakistan border, with Kandahar will be given top priority. [See page 15 for related story]
ONGC Videsh wins Iraq gas contracts
Iraq has signed contracts with Indian and Indonesian companies to carry out gas exploration in the country, Iraq's Oil Minister Amir Muhammed Rasheed has said. "India's ONGC Videsh Ltd and Indonesia's Pertamina will start exploration work of natural gas in an area near the Iraqi border with Saudi Arabia and the area between Najaf and Kerbala in southern Iraq," he stated.
BHEL in the Gulf
BHEL is making a solid entry into the Gulf's power and energy market, with confirmed orders worth over Rs 9.7 billion already in its bag in the past one-and-a-half years, S.F.A. Rizvi, Regional Manager, BHEL, said. The company is considering opening a service and storage facility in Jebel Ali. Recently, BHEL was awarded a contract to supply two 70-mw gas turbine generators worth Rs 2.7 billion to PDO Shell in Oman. Besides, it will supply four 140-mw turbines worth Rs 7 billion to Iraq.
Muscat group may bag ITDC resort
The Muscat-based Gulfar Group is expected to win ITDC's Ashok Beach Resort in Kovalam. The group, owned by Gulfar Mohammed, a Keralite, has submitted the highest offer among the 32 bidders.
The offers that came close to the Gulfar bid were from Bharat Hotels, BPL and Kerala Hotels. Bharat Hotels quoted Rs 420 million, sources said. Two firms, including Thomas Cook, could not take part in the tender as they failed to provide proper bank guarantees, said sources. According to them, Gulfar offered about Rs 450 million for the resort, which includes a hotel spread over 65 acres of enchanting beach. The company, which owns the International Convention Centre in Kochi and two hotels in the state, has also offered Rs 100 million for VRS of the hotel staff.
Bamco signs Kochi resort deal
A Bahrain company has signed a MoU to create a BD3 million resort in Kochi, Kerala. The Bamco Group of Companies signed the MoU in Manama with the Kerala State Industrial Development Corporation.