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Deadline for preparing toll system is tight, expert says

The director of the Transportation Research Institute in Žilina, Ľubomír Palčák, said the winner of the tender to supply a complex electronic toll collection service to the National Highway Company (NDS) in Slovakia will have a very tight deadline.

But if the tender, which eight international groups of candidates applied for, runs as planned, early 2009 will be a realistic deadline for launching the electronic toll collection system, he said.

The toll system applies to motor vehicles that weigh more than 3.5 tonnes, and it covers a network of roads and highways with a combined length of about 2,400 kilometres.

According to the terms of the tender, a preliminary winner should be announced on January 18.

"These deadlines have the advantage of satellite technologies, which require a little less time to set up than microwave systems, but we will see what the tender will bring," said Palčák.

"The level of participation is good,” he added. “All of the strong players in this business have enrolled.”

If all eight candidates fulfill the criteria, which have an economic nature in this pre-qualification round, the NDS could theoretically call on all
candidates to submit their bids.

Palčák expects the NDS will call on five or six candidates to present their bids. He expects the NDS and the Transportation Ministry will be under a lot of pressure to ensure that the second round, where technical bids will be evaluated, is as transparent as possible.

-SITA

Compiled by Zuzana Vilikovská from press reports
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