Following the Union Cabinet’s approval to the Rs 26,000 crore IICC project in the earlier part of this month, the government has invited bids under the EPC mode within the deadline of December 8.

Close to 15 worldwide construction companies including Samsung Construction and China Construction are contending with Indian giants like L&T and Reliance Infrastructure for acquiring the contract to build India’s biggest convention centre.

Request for Proposals (RFPs) have been invited by the Government within the deadline of December 8 for the Engineering, Procurement and Construction (EPC) of the Rs 26,000 crore International Convention and Expo Centre (IICC) project after the Central Government approved the same earlier in November 2017.

A pre-bid conference was held by the Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP) on November 6. According to government officials, the theme of this meeting was to tap the inclination of market players in domains of the project that were globally focused on.

A decision on the EPC contract will be taken by the end of this December. The finalization would be affected by the development of trunk infrastructure in addition to exhibition-cum-convention centre and internal road network system and basement car parking facility. The initial phase will start in January 2018 and will probably culminate by December 2019.

Speaking on the condition of anonymity, a senior government official said, “Convention and exhibition facilities will be operated and managed by experienced global players…The facilities will be at par with the best in the industry world, in size and quality”. The official added that, quite a few global exhibition organizers from Germany, Singapore, Australia, Hong Kong and Dubai have manifested their interest in running the IICC.

The planning of the government for the IICC is on the lines of an international brand for promoting growth and development of India’s trade and commerce. The rationale behind constructing this centre is to host national and international events like multilateral summits, trade fairs, conventions and seminars.

The business district in the making comprises a 230,000 sq metres exhibition and conference area, 275,000 sq metres of hotel space and 375,000 sq metres of commercial retail recreation and office space. The project location sprawls across 89.72 hectares in Dwarka, New Delhi. Constituents of the centre having hotels, retail space and offices will be built by public and private collaboration. The government anticipates a visitor-count of more than 10 million on culmination of the first phase and 23 million after the third phase is completed in 2025.

This project is expected to churn out more than 500,000 direct and indirect jobs. To carry out the project with the support of 100% government sponsored equity through DIPP, the Union Cabinet has given its approval to create a Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV). Across a period of three years, Rs 2, 037 crore will be granted by the government to the SPV for financing trunk infrastructure, The SPV will have the authority to raise debt or assemble funds through land mintage depending on the market scenario.

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