New Delhi: GE and Alstom are believed to be ahead of other bidders in the race to bag contracts for the setting up of multi-crore diesel and electric locomotive factories in Bihar that are among the top eight infrastructure initiatives which are being monitored by the PMO.
According to railway sources, while the financial bids for a diesel factory at Marhora was opened today, price bids for the Madhepura electric locomotive factory were opened yesterday.
Marking the first major FDI offer for railways, two US multi-nationals -- GE and EMD -- are learnt to have submitted financial bids for the Rs 1,000 crore factory at Marhora.
The project is for a total of 1,000 diesel locomotives -- 700 of 4,500 horse power (HP) and 300 locos of 6,000 HP -- over 10 years using state-of-the-art technology.
Railway sources said that the price quoted by GE seems to be lower than that by EMD.
Meanwhile, three global companies -- Alstom, Bombardier and Siemens -- have submitted bids for setting up a modern electrical locomotive factory at Madhepura at a cost of nearly Rs 1,300 crore.
Sources said that French major Alstom has quoted a low price for manufacturing 12,000 HP electric locomotives than the other two bidders.
However, sources added that "the bids will be examined by the tender committees and then only will the successful bidders be announced for the two projects".
With the government allowing 100 percent FDI in railways, the setting up of the two locomotive plants in joint venture mode is crucial for the public transporter in order to boost its infrastructure. The two projects are among the top eight infrastructure projects being monitored by the Prime Minster's Office.
As per the bid condition for the Madhepura project, while five of the 800 electric locomotives will be imported, the plant will, over 11 years, manufacture the remaining 795.
The Marhora factory will manufacture 1,000 diesel electric locomotives, that is, 100 locomotives annually. While 100 will be imported, rest will be manufactured at Marhora as part of the Make-in-India initiative.
Railways will have 26 percent equity while the global players will have 74 percent equity in each of the plants.