New South Wales transport minister Gladys Berejiklian addressed representatives from countries including Australia, France, Italy, Spain, Japan, Singapore and China, who were invited to work with the NSW government to deliver the central business district (CBD) and South East Light Rail project.
Expressions of interest for the project’s two main delivery contracts were released this week.
"I am thrilled to see such a high level of private sector interest, from organisations that can provide the skills and expertise required to deliver this major project," she said. "I strongly encourage interested organisations to respond to the expressions of interest.
"Private sector organisations have already shown great support for delivery of the CBD and South East Light Rail, with strong participation in market sounding and industry briefings to date, and I look forward to seeing this enthusiasm translate into high quality tender responses."
Transport for NSW will assess all expressions of interest before shortlisting a number of tenderers who will be asked to provide a more detailed submission.
Transport for NSW will make a contribution to tendering costs for the PPP contract capped at the lesser of $5 million or one third of verifiable proposal costs incurred by unsuccessful bidders.
Transport for NSW’s intention is to short-list no more than three applicants but this will depend on the responses received.
"This is a complex project and we understand that tendering for the public private partnership contract in particular will require a lot of work," said Berejiklian. "It is important we make clear to industry that the Government’s commitment to deliver light rail is unwavering and a capped contribution to bid costs of short-listed bidders is one way of doing that.
"It will be extremely beneficial that the Government will now retain intellectual property for design contained in the unsuccessful tenders.”
She was mindful of the impact of the cancellation of projects by the former government, saying that this had impacted the confidence of industry in the state’s ability to be able to deliver major infrastructure projects.
Work on the AU$1.6bn CBD and South East Light Rail project will start in 2014 and take five or six years to complete.