Due to the impact of the current international political situation, the risks of construction of the infrastructure of the border between the Republic of Latvia and the Republic of Belarus have changed significantly. Also, the sanctions imposed by the world’s countries, including the Member States of the European Union (EU) and Latvia on Russia and Belarus, have changed the metalworking market and delivery possibilities considerably, and the prices of fuel have increased. Therefore, the construction company SIA Citrus Solutions was forced to recall its application for the closed price survey. SJSC State Real Estate (SRE) has announced a new, closed survey, where construction companies, who had submitted applications in the previous survey have been invited to participate repeatedly,” informs Renārs Griškevičs, Chairman of the Board of SRE.
SJSC State Real Estate has announced a new, closed price survey. Construction companies, who had submitted applications in the previous price survey, may submit the new offers until the evening of 11 March 2022. As a result of the new survey, a price correction is expected, the amount of which will only be determined after submitting the offers and assessing them. It is planned to start the construction of the border fence as fast as possible, and it is planned to keep the existing deadlines for construction; therefore, the involvement of new construction companies in the price survey is not planned.
“Building the Eastern border is currently an SRE priority project – and it is critically important for the safety of Latvia at the present situation. The producer of the raw materials necessary for the construction company SIA “Citrus Solutions” has provided information about the possible increase in material costs and the possible problems with providing the necessary materials, including metal, due to the changes in the metalworking industry market. The sanctions have also rapidly influenced the costs of fuel. Considering the rapid increase in the costs and the limited availability thereof, we took a decision to announce a new price survey, so that all the construction companies addressed would have equal opportunities to submit price offers that correspond to the new situation,” R. Griškevičs indicated.
In December 2021, SRE approached 15 construction companies with an invitation to submit confirmation of potential participation in the Eastern border construction project. When evaluating the participation of potential construction companies in the project, the level of their reputation and the amount of construction work performed in 2020 was assessed. Confirmation of potential participation in the project was submitted by 11 of the 15 construction companies approached. They had the opportunity to get familiar with the technical specifications and participate in the negotiations on the implementation of the project, as well as to clarify any unclear issues. After the negotiations, nine construction companies continued to participate in the price survey, six of which submitted their offers, including four who submitted construction offers for all nine stages. The most economically advantageous offer for the construction of all nine high readiness stages has been submitted by the construction company SIA “Citrus Solutions”, for the total amount of 31.4 million euros (excluding VAT). The total length of the sections is less than 84 kilometres of the estimated 137 kilometres.
The Eastern border project is an inter-institutional co-operation project. In accordance with the Law on the Construction of the External Land Border Infrastructure adopted by the Saeima on 12 November 2021, the SRE manages, implements and supervises all works necessary for the construction of the border infrastructure, implements the procurements necessary for construction, and concludes procurement contracts. The implementation of the project is supervised by the Monitoring Committee for the Construction of External Border Infrastructure, which consists of representatives from the Ministry of Defence, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ministry of Economics, Ministry of Transport, Ministry of Agriculture, Ministry of Environmental Protection and Regional Development, State Border Guard, National Collateral Agency, SJSC “Latvian State Radio and Television Centre”, SJSC “State Real Estate”, JSC “ Latvian State Forests”, Latvian Geospatial Information Agency and the National Armed Forces. The project envisages the construction of 173 kilometres of the state border strip, including 134 kilometres of permanent fencing. The project will be financed from the State Budget and its initial funding was estimated at 39.5 million euros.
Maintenance of objects important for the security of Latvia and the European Union and the development of borders is one of the directions of SRE activity. In total, 18.5 million euros is currently being invested in the modernisation of the Latvia-Russia and Latvia-Belarus borders taking place under the management of SRE. As a result of these projects, by the end of 2023, comfortable and modern working conditions will be available to the staff of border control points, and the infrastructure necessary for border control and customs control will be improved, making border crossing more efficient and faster.