Port Bids

Oct 10, 2007 (LBO) – Sri Lanka’s Supreme Court Wednesday ordered the government to open all four financial bids to build a new container terminal in the new Colombo south port project, officials said. The order came after a consortium led by conglomerate John Keells Holdings sought court intervention when their technical bid for the project was rejected.

The financial bids to build and operate the first container terminal in the new deep water port to be built next to Colombo are scheduled to be opened Thursday.

Also Thursday, the Appeal Court will hear a case filed by Aitken Spence, which has bid for the terminal in partnership with PSA Corp, seeking to block a rival bid by Hutchison Port Holdings (HPH).

HPH and PSA Corp are two of the world’s biggest port operators.

The Supreme Court order means the Cabinet appointed negotiating committee will have to open the bid submitted by the JKH-led consortium that includes South Asia Gateway Terminals which runs Colombo port’s privatized container terminal, and the holding company of Malaysia’s Westport.

Their bid was earlier rejected on the grounds of eligibility and the negotiating committee did not open the consortium’s technica