Thursday, August 4, 2011

Romania re-negotiates contract with US company Bechtel for highway

By Associated Press

BUCHAREST, Romania — Romanian and American authorities say the U.S. company Bechtel has re-negotiated a contract to build a 400-kilometer (245 mile) highway from central Romania to the Hungarian border.

Transportation Minister Anca Boagiu said late Wednesday the deal, which ends a standoff over costs and the pace of work, will save Romania €6 billion (US$8.58 billion).

Under the agreement, Bechtel will build a total of about 115 kilometers (70 miles) of the highway, with the remaining stretch offered through tender to other companies.

Romania signed an agreement with Bechtel in 2004 to build the entire highway, but costs rocketed and it has only built 54 kilometers (34 miles).

U.S. Ambassador Mark Gitenstein on Thursday praised the breakthrough.

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