Following is the update on implementation progress of 8 subprojects included in Tranche 1:
(i) Kunduz-Taluqan Transmission Line ($29.3 million) Comprises of 70 kms of 220-kV transmission line connecting cities of Kunduz and Taloqan in northern Afghanistan. The contract was awarded in December 2011 to KEC International and project was commissioned and is operational since 2013. The subproject is financially closed.
(ii) Kunduz-Baghlan Distribution Networks ($51.28 million) It comprises commissioning of 41,000 new distribution connections in cities of Kunduz and Baghlan, awarded to joint venture (JV) of CNEEC-Maamar International in January 2013 and made effective in June 2013. Since inception, the JV partners had issues related to (i) internal JV agreement and division of project disbursements, and (ii) dismal performance of prime and sub-contractors. Weak supervision by supervision consultant and resolution of issues in time also delayed the fielding of contractors. The situation at project sites has been further accentuated since mid-2015 due insurgent activity and military operation being undertaken by the government. The equipment storage of the contractor including some equipment has been damaged, which hit by rocket fired by the insurgents. The work is around 50% completed. Although as per the revised action plan which was provided in Q2 2016 by the contractor, which confirmed the project will be completed in December 2017, it is likely that further delays will be encountered.
(iii) NEPS Operations and Maintenance (O&M) Equipment ($14.26 million) The subproject comprised supply of emergency equipment to DABS. Out of 3, 2 lots were awarded in May 2014 after rounds of rebidding. Lot 3 was advertised twice but failed to solicit technical bidders. Therefore EA has requested cancellation of Lot 3 ($0.3 million) due to low amount and dismal response. The project is 100% complete.
(iv) Sheberghan Gas Wells Rehabilitation ($10.1 million & $11.9 million respectively). The subproject comprises rehabilitation of 8 12 gas wells, as technically feasible, in Sheberghan in northern Afghanistan. Phase 1 of the gas wells rehabilitation was awarded to Turkish Petroleum in August 2012 and 6 wells were fully rehabilitated in October 2014. These wells are now producing nearly 1.2 million cubic meters of gas/day for use by the industrial, commercial and residential customers. The Phase-II of gas wells rehabilitation (2 wells) has been rebid in March 2016, after failure of first bidding round in 2015. The package has been awarded to Xianjiang Gas Company in Q1 2017, with expected commissioning in Q1 2018. The contract was signed on 18 February 2017.
(v) Future Projects Preparatory Facility ($5.14 million). The subproject comprises preparation of future energy projects including formulation or pre-feasibilities, bidding documents and evaluation of bids through till contract award. The contract was awarded to Fichtner GmbH in November 2012 with the current closing date is 30 June 2017. However, due to additional projects preparation included recently by the Office of Afghan President and the EA, the contract was extended by 12 months and ADB approved no cost extension on 16 June 2016.
(vi) Program Supervision and Project Implementation Consultant ($21.68 million). The subproject comprises program management and supervision, capacity development and support, and related due diligence for G-0134 and G-0184 subprojects. The contract was awarded in May 2010 and has been extended twice through till 30 June 2016. However with Tranche 1 and Tranche 2 subprojects still under implementation, the contract has been extended through till June-2017. ADB approved no cost extension of the contract on 30 June 2016.