France’s Alstom among $1.5 bln Panama metro bidders

PARIS, April 27 (BestGrowthStock) – French engineering group Alstom
(ALSO.PA: ) is part of a consortium bidding for a $1.5 billion
contract to build a Panamanian subway, the country’s ambassador
to France said on Tuesday.

Bids to build the nine mile (14 km) subway through Panama
City are due by June, Henry Faarup told Reuters in an interview.

One of Latin America’s best-performing economies, Panama
grew 2.4 percent in 2009 even as most of the region’s economies
contracted.

The global economic recovery and a $5.25 billion expansion
of the Panama Canal is expected to contribute to projected
growth of around 5 percent this year.

The dollarized Central American country received an
investment-grade rating on its debt from Fitch Ratings on in
March due to a combination of strong growth and stable public
finances. [ID:nWNA6639]

Faarup said Alstom was part of a consortium led by Brazil’s
Construtora Norberto Odebrecht. Two other consortiums were
prequalified earlier this year to bid for the project led by
Spain’s Acciona (ANA.MC: ) and Italy’s Impregilo (IPGI.MI: ).

The metro, the first in the country, would cost about $1.5
billion and would be funded through loans and government
channels, he said.

A winner could be announced in July and construction could
begin before the end of this year, the government said in March
[ID:nN17134415].

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(Reporting by John Irish; Editing by David Holmes)

France’s Alstom among $1.5 bln Panama metro bidders