Uruguay launches tender for US$800mn railway

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Wednesday, December 6, 2017

Uruguay's public works and transport ministry (MTOP) published the bidding documents for the project to build a 373km freight rail line between Montevideo port and the city of Paso de los Toros (Tacuarembó department).

The project is budgeted at US$800mn and will be carried out under a PPP model. Aside from the rail line, it includes 40 overpasses and underpasses. The concession period is 22 years.

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Public works minister Victor Rossi said the interest shown by Finnish company UPM in building its second pulp mill in Uruguay was one of the reasons that prompted the project, but that studies show the potential for a much wider use.

"Once the infrastructure is in place, there will be millions of tonnes from other sectors in the country" that will benefit from the railway, he said.

Last month, UPM and the Uruguayan government signed an agreement about the pulp mill's infrastructure needs, which include a railway.

The bids to build the rail line will be opened on April 9, 2018, but Rossi says the awarding won't happen until November 1. The technical documents can be seen here, in Spanish, while the bidding documents must be purchased from the MTOP.