DBFO Project A13/A1089 Thames Gateway -Prequalification Document-

This Prequalification Document describes the Al3/A1089 Thames Gateway Design, Build, Finance and Operate (DBFO) Project (the "Project") as currently envisaged. It replaces the Prequalification Document dated November l996.

The Secretary of State for the Department of Environment, Transport and the Regions is the Highway Authority and is ultimately responsible for the management, maintenance and improvement of the trunk road network, which includes Thames Gateway. The Highways Agency (the "Agency") is an Executive Agency of the Department of Environment, Transport and the Regions. It has executive responsibility for delivery of the Secretary of State's highways functions including DBFO road procurement. Attention is drawn to the comments in paragraph 2,7,4 below concerning the Government's Green Paper"New Leadership for London".

The Agency retains the following central advisers for DBFO:

Financial: KPMG

Hambros Bank Ltd. / Price Waterhouse Project Finance

Legal: Denton Hall

Technical: Sir William Halcrow and Partners Ltd

The Design Agents for this Project are set out in paragraph 2.3 of Appendix A.

A new Contract Notice has been published by the Agency in the official journal of the European Communities inviting requests from interested parties ("Candidates") to be selected to negotiate with a view to entering into a DBFO contract in respect of the Project. This Prequalification Document provides additional information and describes the procedure ("prequalification") for selection of Candidates with whom the Agency intends to negotiate. It should be read in conjunction with the Public Works Contract (Negotiated Procedure) Notice published in the Official Journal.

Requests to prequalify must be received by midday on 9 March 1998. No requests will be accepted after this time.

The DBFO Contract will be awarded under the negotiated procedure applicable to Public Works Contracts under the Public Works Contract Regulations 1991 (SI l991/2680) "the Regulations") which implement the EC Works Directive (93/37/EEC). If there is sufficient number of suitable Candidates, the Agency intends to invite up to four candidates (the "Tenderers") to negotiate.

The Project may include a Contingent Scheme. More details are outlined in Section 4 and Appendix A.

The contracts for the earlier DBFO projects entitle the DBFO Co to receive payments based on usage of the Project Road. While this shadow toll payment arrangement has proved successful for those projects, the Agency considers that payment based on availability, safety performance, reliability of journey times and usage, is likely better to reflect the urban operating characteristics of this Project,increase the level of service to the public and assist in the achievement of policy objectives. The payment mechanism is dealt with in further detail in Section 5.

In order to initiate the negotiations, the Agency intends to send to Tenderers a set of tender invitation documents (the “Tender Invitation Documents"),including a draft of the DBFO contract (the“Model Contract"). The Model Contract has been developed and refined in light of the negotiations on the earlier DBFO contracts. The Agency therefore expects negotiations to move more rapidly and to focus on project specific issues.

The Tender Invitation Documents will set out an opening position for negotiations on the definition of obligations and the allocation of risk. In order to provide a benchmark for negotiations,Tenderers will be required to submit a tender on that basis (the “Standard Bid").The Agency will also invite Variant Bids subject to compliance with specified core requirements (a“Variant Bid").

Following an analysis of the various proposals, the Agency will negotiate as necessary to refine and finalize the definition of obligations,the allocation of risk and the attendant payments to be included in the DBFO contract. At the conclusion of the negotiations the Agency will select the successful Tenderer (the "DBFO Co") on the basis of the most economically advantageous offer.Further details of the procedure are given in Section 6.

The information in this document is preliminary only and will be superseded by the Tender Invitation Documents. The information provided,together with that in the Appendices,is offered in good faith for the guidance of Candidates, but no warranty or representation is given as to the accuracy or completeness or any of it and the Department of Environment,Transport and the Regions, the Agency and advisers shall not be under any liability for any error,mis‐statement or omission. None of the information shall constitute a contract or part of a contract. The Agency reserves the right not to follow up this invitation in any way. In the event that the Agency decides not to proceed to invite tenders,prequalification applicants will not be reimbursed any costs.

Requests for clarification should be directed to the Agency as detailed at Section 9.