Twenty-seven companies, teamed up in seven consortia, have submitted their bids for the salvage of the ill-fated Sewol ferry.
The government of South Korea opened bidding in May this year in order to select a salvage company to raise the ferry which sank April 16, 2014, killing 304 people, 250 of which were high school students.
Five consortia are made up of local South Korean firms and companies from the US, Europe and China whereas the remaining two are made up of local companies, Yonhap news agency reports.
According to the country’s Ministry of Ocean and Fisheries, the selection process will focus mostly on the bidders’ ability to safely raise the ferry without any further damages to the ship, which is believed to hold the bodies of the last nine passengers still unaccounted for.
Bidders can receive a maximum of a 100 points, up to 80 for the technology used, and up to 20 points for the price. Bidders open for cooperation with Korean companies will get additional points, the Ministry said.
The winner of the tender, expected to be announced by the end of July, is scheduled to start the work in September.
The salvage operation is estimated to last for about one year and cost around USD 139 million.
World Maritime News Staff