Nfld. & Labrador

Astaldi discloses terms of bridge deal with Nalcor in quarterly report

A bridge contract between Nalcor and Astaldi grants the Italian contractor upwards of $150 million after the company burned through its first $1.1 billion contract.

Talks are continuing for a second bridge contract through 2017

The Muskrat Falls spillway went into operation August 3, 2016 (Nalcor Energy)

A bridge contract between Nalcor and Astaldi grants the Italian contractor upwards of $150 million after the company burned through its first $1.1 billion contract.

The terms of the deal struck between the two sides in July had previously been called "confidential" by Nalcor CEO Stan Marshall.

Astaldi, however, published the dollar amount in its quarterly report released last Wednesday.

On Tuesday, Marshall confirmed the figure to CBC and said the actual amount paid out depends on the contractor meeting specific construction targets.

"Through the negotiated bridge agreement, Astaldi had the opportunity to earn up to $150 million Canadian by meeting all milestones," he said. "Astaldi continues to work towards meeting these milestones."

The original contract was considered problematic by both sides. Astaldi's low bid earned them the contract to construct much of the infrastructure, but the company quickly ran into trouble.

Italian contractor Astaldi earned the bid for much of the Muskrat Falls construction, including the spillway, pictured here. (Nalcor)

The terms of the contract put a cap on how much the company could charge for labour. By this past July, Astaldi had reached that cap and was not being paid for its workers.

Marshall said Astaldi was partially to blame for the major cost overruns, and pointed to the company's lack of experience in a northern climate as a costly factor.

Since then, the company has continued to "show good progress and improved production," Marshall said.

Both sides are still working to reach another interim agreement to reach the end of 2017 or an overall agreement for the completion of the project.