Jul 22 2012
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IDB consortium in short-list of 7 for air carrier license
The General Authority of Civil Aviation (GACA) recently chose these firms out of a total 14 vying to win the license to operate both domestic and international services to and from Saudi Arabia.
The qualified firms include Qatar Airways, Nesma Holding Co. and Falcon Express Cargo Airlines.
The following consortia are also qualified for presenting offers: IDB -EgyptAir, Gulf Air-Abdel Hadi Al-Qahtani & Sons Co., Bahrain Air-Saudia Private Aviation, and Chinese HNA Group-Saudi Mazaya Al Shabab Co. GACA will stop receiving offers from the qualified firms in September. It is expected to announce the name of the licensed company in October.
The licensed company will begin offering services early next year, the sources said.
The company will have the freedom to choose any Saudi airport as its hub and also to operate international flights.
GACA stopped receiving proposals from qualified companies on July 7, according to the sources. Its tender contained detailed information about the airports, destination points, volume of traffic and procedures as well as terms and conditions for choosing the winner.
The bidders have already been supplied with a schedule detailing each procedure that they have to undergo before winning the license.
GACA will also provide documented feedback on received files to qualified firms during a meeting involving both parties in August.
During the meeting, GACA will provide clarifications to all their queries to help them prepare their offers. The sources said the licensed company is required to fulfill all economic requirements and safety criteria effective from November.
After completing all operational and technical procedures, the company is expected to start operations at the beginning of the first quarter of 2013, the sources said.
In January, GACA invited letters of intent from aviation companies to take part in the bid for winning the license.
Earlier this month, the authority completed procedures to choose seven qualified firms out of the total 14 with the support of an international expert company that looked into the companies' profiles including their technical capabilities, experience in air transport and financial capabilities to establish and operate an aviation company viably.
GACA then short-listed the most qualified among them to present their offers.
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