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Brazilian high speed rail tenders delayed

The Brazilian government has put back the tender return date for bids to build its high speed rail network following pressure from four potential bidders.

Bids to design and build the $20bn (£13bn) Brazilian high speed rail network between the cities of Rio de Janeiro , Sao Paulo and Campinas under a 40 -yearconcession were due to be submitted on the 29 November.

Bids will now be returned on 11 April 2011 with the winning tender selected on the 29 April. The government still hopes to begin operation in 2016.

“This decision has been taking at the highest level,” said Brazilian Land Transport Agency (ANTT) superintendent Helio Franca.

ANTT is the Brazilian government agency overseeing the project.

Only one consortium was ready to submit a bid – a South Korean-led bid with Brazilian construction companies.

Bidders from Spain, France, Germany and China asked for more time to prepare.

The government believes that with more companies bidding there will be a more competitive price.

Regulations to safeguard the public interest demand that the winning bidder will be the one that offers to charge the lowest fares.

The concession includes five years of construction.

Government officials are hopeful that the project will be ready for the 2016 summer Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro.

The high-speed line is planned to be 510km long, including 90km of tunnels and 108km of bridges (NCE 4 November).

The network will have eight stations, with others possibly added later.

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