The first bidding phase will cover the contract for railway systems,
operation and maintenance, while the second will cover infrastructure.
The changes by the Federal government were unveiled yesterday, the
deadline for submission of initial proposals.

Previously the ANTT had sought a single consortium to construct the
Reais 33bn ($US 20.2bn) line as a design-build-operate-maintain
concession. However, foreign companies had found it difficult to form
consortia with domestic construction companies, a condition of the
bidding process. Last week the ANTT confirmed it had received two
requests to delay the bidding process, one from the Brazilian Rail
Industry Association (Abifer) and the other from a Korean consortium
lead by Hyundai-Rotem.

"We are using a different model because we want to have open
competition and international competition," says ANTT director general
Mr Bernardo Figueiredo. "The new model has two advantages. More
companies will be eligible to work in each segment and the groups will
be able to work simultaneously on their respective parts of the

A public hearing will be held next month on the amendments, but the
ANTT insists the changes will not delay the start of construction, and
Figueiredo says he expects work to begin by the end of next year.