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St. Helena

Volume 455: debated on Wednesday 10 January 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development if he will make a statement on the progress of the building of the new airport in St. Helena. (113524)

An invitation to tender (ITT) issued on 11 July 2006. In light of reactions from the market, relating principally to the cost of tendering and the proposed allocation of risk, this notice was withdrawn. The notice for a new competition was published in the Official Journal of the EU on 28 October 2006.

While the scope of work remains largely unchanged, the new invitation is based on a revised allocation of risk under which the Government of St. Helena would assume greater responsibility for certain project risks. The revised invitation also contains reference designs for the major project elements to help tenderers minimise the cost and time of tendering. We expect to issue the revised invitation to tender towards the end of the second quarter of 2007.

Inevitably, this means a delay in the likely completion date for the airport. We now estimate that air access will be introduced by 2011-12.