BUSINESS SHORTS

National Highway Company announces toll tender

THE NATIONAL Highway Company (NDS) is ready to open a tender for the construction and operation of its electronic highway toll collection system for trucks.

The NDS estimates the order will cost Sk20 billion (€600 million) without VAT, the SITA newswire wrote.

NDS has sent an announcement of the start of the public procurement process to the official bulletin of the European Union. The tender will be officially announced after the bulletin publishes it, said Transport, Post Office and Telecommunications Ministry spokesman Marián Jánošík.

The winning company is to have a 14-year contract - building the system within one year and operating it for 13 years, starting in 2009. A contract option will also make it possible to extend the contract by five years.

The NDS plans to shortlist a maximum of five bidders based on a restricted tender procedure.

Five companies have confirmed interest in the tender: SANEF, Siemens, Slovak Telekom, Kapsch, and the ToSy consortium.

Slovakia plans to collect tolls from trucks on 2,435 kilometres of roads, of which nearly 350 kilometres will be motorways. The state expects annual revenues from toll collection to reach Sk4 billion to Sk4.5 billion (€120.7 million to €135.7 million), which will go to NDS coffers. The NDS plans to use the money for road construction and repair.

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