We were the international legal advisers jointly mandated with local law firm, Ledwaba Mazwai, to advise the Gauteng Provincial Government on this pathfinder project in a relatively untested market.
We were heavily involved in all aspects of project from the initial development of the business case to financial close.
During the procurement phase, working together with the financial advisors, technical advisors and the project team, we drafted all the procurement documentation and developed the legal framework for the project which was built around a Public Private Partnership concession agreement for design, construction, partial financing, maintenance and operation. There were a number of planning, environmental, construction, tunnelling and ground conditions issues rising to the fore each were strategically solved with the broader team.
We were part of the bid evaluation team and supported inter-governmental briefings. Upon selection of the preferred bidder and the reserve bidder we were at the negotiation table to finalise the contract terms for all the interfacing contract documentation.
During the bidding process, South Africa was awarded the 2010 FIFA World Cup, which imposed a clear deadline for the negotiation period and for the contract start date so that the project would be ready in time.
We developed a legal solution which, whilst addressing the concerns of the Government and the preferred bidder, enabled construction to commence in September 2006 well ahead of an ultimate financial close and allowing the link between OR Tambo International Airport and Sandton (Johannesburg) to be operational for the 2010 FIFA Soccer World Cup that commenced