The deadline for signing the contract to award the concession on construction of the Horgos-Pozega Highway expires Wednesday.

The Serbian Minister of Capital Investments, Velimir Ilic, stated that this week it will be known whether the contract would be signed with the consortium comprising the Austrian Alpine Mayreder and Spanish FCC or would the job be offered to the second-ranking bidder in the tender, the Serbian consortium PORR.

Ilic added that if the representatives of the FCC, which asked for additional consultations, do not sign the contract it would be signed with the second-ranking bidder PORR, which has already made arrangements to do the job in cooperation with Alpine Mayreder.

The consortium comprising the Austrian Alpine Mayreder and the Spanish FCC won the tender to award the concession for the construction of the Horgos-Pozega Highway in early November 2006, having bid the lowest price of EUR 1.5 billion.

The concession is being awarded for a period of 25 years and it envisages the construction of the left lane of the 106 km Horgos-Novi Sad highway section, the maintenance of the 68-km stretch of the highway from Novi Sad to Belgrade and the design and construction of the highway from Belgrade to Pozega, totalling 148 kilometres in length.

The second-ranking bidder in the tender was а consortium of Serbian companies PORR, followed by the consortium headed by Austrias Strabag and the least favourable bid was submitted by a consortium of the French company Vinci and GNP.

The Horgos-Pozega Highway will form part of the new road to the Montenegrin coast, the total value of which will be EUR 3.5 billion, while the Serbian section of this road should be worth approximately EUR 1.5 billion.