Two foreign companies vying for contract to build bridge between Guyana and Suriname
GEORGETOWN, Guyana (CMC) – Two international companies have submitted bids to the Guyana National Procurement and Tender and Administration Board (NPTAB), to build the Corentyne River bridge to connect Guyana and Suriname.
Ballast Nedham, a company headquartered in the Netherlands, which as built most of the major river bridges in Suriname is competing with the Chinese company, China Roads and Bridges for the contract.
n November 2020, the South American neighbours signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for the construction of a high-span bridge over the Corentyne River linking the two countries; and in 2022, they signed agreeing to the conduct of a feasibility study and design of the Corentyne River Bridge.
The objective is for the bridge to be built using the DBFOM (Design, Build, Finance, Operate and Maintain) model, with a lifespan of 100 years and low maintenance.
Upon completion, the bridge is expected to cater for ships of 47,000 dead weight tons, a horizontal clearance of 100 meters and vertical clearance of 43 metres.
The Trinidad-based consultancy firm, WSP Caribbean, has already conducted a number of studies to determine the best DBFOM model for the Corentyne Bridge through a Public Private Partnership.
The next step in the process is for the bids to be evaluated before Guyana and Suriname decide on which company would build the bridge across the Corentyne River from Moleson Creek in Guyana to South Drain in Suriname via Long Island.
Technical and financial evaluations also have to be completed.
IN 2020, Guyana/s President, Ifraan Ali had said the construction of the bridge will create tremendous opportunities for both countries.
“Once constructed, the bridge will serve as a permanent physical link between the people of Guyana and Suriname but more importantly, that links to the rest of the South American continent,” President Ali had said.
His Suriname counterpart, President Chandrikapersad Santokhi had stated that the bridge would mark a new era for both countries in several areas.
“This bridge on the Corentyne River is not only important to facilitate the movement of persons and goods, trade and cross border cooperation it also symbolises a transition from the old to a new era; the era of wellbeing and prosperity of our people and freedom, democracy and the rule of law,” he had said.