The launch follows the Canadian Government's block on the Laurentia Project at the Port of Quebec on environmental grounds, reports UK's Port Strategy.
'Given our schedule, we are continuing to develop and build the Contrecoeur container terminal through this national and international procurement process which will allow us to identify the consortium offering the best conditions, particularly for the operation of our important project,' said Martin Imbleau, president and CEO of the MPA.
The terminal, which is anticipated to handle 1.15 million TEU annually, received a favourable report from the Impact Assessment Agency of Canada and ministerial approval. It is also the recipient of financial support from both levels of government.
The call for qualification aims to qualify a number of national or international consortia that will be called upon in the coming months to submit a proposal with the aim of concluding a long-term agreement for the design-build-finance-operate and maintenance of the future terminal. Operators who participated in the exclusive preliminary discussions are invited to the next steps in the process.
Interested companies and consortia will have to demonstrate their technical expertise, their financial soundness as well as their knowledge in the development of the container market. The conditions indicated in the decision statement of the Minister of the Environment and Climate Change of Canada must also be respected.
Mr Imbleau added: 'The Contrecoeur container terminal will be a world-class infrastructure capable of efficiently serving Quebec, Ontario, and the American Midwest. Taking advantage of industrial zoning and an exceptional location close to rail and motorway access, the future terminal offers the opportunity to carry out an exemplary project from an environmental point of view for a private partner wishing to participate in the development of the commercial corridor that 'is the Saint-Laurent - Grands Lacs.'