Multidisciplinary firms are announced as preferred bidders on two big infrastructure contracts

Amec and Balfour Beatty have been appointed preferred bidders on National Grid contracts worth over £1bn.

Balfour Beatty was announced as preferred partner on the five-year Eastern Overhead Line and Cable Alliance which will upgrade and develop the eastern half of the National Grid.

Amec, in a JV with Babcock International and Mott MacDonald, was announced as the preferred partner for the West Overhead Lines and Cable Alliance, which will upgrade the western half of England and Wales in the next five years. AMEC’s share of the contract is £237.5m

There is an option to extend both contracts for a further five years.

The two contracts forms part of National Grid's expenditure of up to £2.8billion to improve the National Grid. The work will enable new infrastructure such as wind turbines to be connected to the grid.

Other work includes the construction of substations across the country. The partners for these alliances are:

  • South East: AREVA, Skanska and Mott MacDonald
  • South Wales and West: Jacobs, Morrison Utility Services and Mitsubishi Electric
  • Central: ABB, Morgan Est and Atkins
  • North: Siemens, J Murphy & Sons and PB Power
The alliances are designed to support National Grid's investment programme in the transmission network and contribute to the wider issue of security of supply.

Amec chief executive Samir Brikho said: “We are delighted to be extending our strong relationship with National Grid and look forward to working in partnership to deliver an upgraded transmission network that will bring significant benefits to our customer, the public and the UK economy," said.

Balfour Beatty chief executive Ian Tyler was similarly delighted. He said that being able to offer a competitive, integrated service was why the company was able to win big contracts in the infrastructure sector.

Balfour Beatty and Amec and its partners expect the contract to be signed in early 2007.