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Proposal for the state budget 2024: Green light to put the ship tunnel out for tender

Photo:Kystverket / Multiconsult /Link Arkitektur/Mir

The Norwegian Coastal Administration receives 130 million to work on the Stad ship tunnel in 2024. Parts of the funds are associated with the effort to find a contractor who can build the world’s first ship tunnel.

The budget leaks around Stad ship tunnel have been known since September. When the proposal for the state budget for 2024 came in October, it became even more apparent. The Norwegian Coastal Administration plans to put the Stad ship tunnel out for tender in 2024.

The Stad ship tunnel is a highly important project, both for the business sector, local shipping, and safety along the coast. It will also provide crucial predictability for the development of key maritime industries in the region. Starting the tender process is essential to determine if it can be realized within the established framework. If we receive offers within this framework, we can start the work on realizing the ship tunnel. That is our goal, says former Minister of Fisheries and Ocean Policy Bjørnar Skjæran.

The government proposes allocating 130 million Norwegian kroner for preparatory work and conducting the tender competition in 2024.

Tender process next

We are pleased that the government acknowledges that this is an important project for coastal Norway and for the safety of shipping. A ship tunnel of such dimensions has never been built before and that is why risk and uncertainty provisions in the cost estimates has been significant. We have stated that we believe it is possible to reduce the costs for the project, especially in connection with reducing uncertainty. But the significant savings will only be clarified in a tender process and through negotiations with the contractors who will build the tunnel. It is good that we have now achieved a breakthrough on this, says Acting Director of the Norwegian Coastal Administration, Per Jan Osdal.

In the spring of 2021, the Norwegian Parliament (Stortinget) approved that the Stad ship tunnel could be built within a cost framework of 4.09 billion Norwegian kroner. This amounts to approximately 5.06 billion kroner in 2024-prices.

If the bids from contractors do not come below the cost framework of 5.06 billion kroner, the project may need to return to the Parliament to get a new budget approved.

High interest among contractors

The Norwegian Coastal Administration has conducted two supplier conferences, both with significant national and international interest. The latest was held in January/February, with over 160 participants from 80 different suppliers and contractors. The purpose of the supplier conferences is to prepare the market for an upcoming competitive tender process.

“We experience a great interest in the project among contractors. Strong competition will likely have a positive effect both on technical solutions and price”, says Project Leader for the Stad ship tunnel, Terje Skjeppestad.



Terje Skjeppestad /

About the Stad ship tunnel

The Norwegian Coastal Administration (Kystverket) has been tasked with building the Stad Ship Tunnel, the world's first full-scale ship tunnel. The construction project will be carried out by a main contractor through a turnkey contract. It is scheduled to be announced in 2024, with construction potentially commencing in 2025.

The objective of the Stad Ship Tunnel project is to improve the navigability and safety of maritime transport around Stad, likely the most weather-exposed and dangerous stretch of sea along the Norwegian coast. Additionally, the project is to be optimized to extract other benefits.

The ship tunnel will be constructed at the narrowest point of the Stad Peninsula, between the Moldefjord and Kjødepollen, in the Vanylvsfjord. The tunnel will be 1.7 kilometers long (2.2 km including entrance areas), 50 meters high, and with a width of 36 meters. This means that vessels up to the size of the Coastal Route/Hurtigruten will be able to safely navigate past Stadlandet.

The Norwegian Coastal Administration is a transport agency under the Ministry of Trade, Industry, and Fisheries. Our vision is to develop the coast and ocean areas into the world's safest and cleanest. The Stad Ship Tunnel is a part of this effort.

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