ROME, Jan 23 (Reuters) – Italian oil service company Saipem is among 12 companies that have bid for the job of scrapping the hulk of the Costa Concordia cruise liner, which capsized off the Tuscany coast more than two years ago, a source close to the matter said on Thursday.
An Italian junior minister said last year that demolishing the ship would cost around 350 million euros ($475 million).
Saipem, 43 percent owned by oil and gas group Eni, has presented an offer, together with Genoa-based companies Mariotti and San Giorgio, to demolish the ship in the port of Genoa, the source said.
The deadline for offers was midnight on Wednesday and the tender will be awarded in March.
Saipem declined to comment.
A second source said there had been a total of 12 bids to scrap the Concordia, five of which came from Italian groups that plan to destroy the ship in domestic ports.
It was previously reported that an invitation to tender was sent out to 13 companies representing 6 countries: Italy, France, UK, Norway, Turkey and China. Other Italian ports in contention include ports Piombino, Civitavecchia and Palermo.
The 114,500 tonne Concordia washed up on rocks on Jan. 13, 2012, killing 32 people. Since then, it has been hauled upright but still rests where it capsized off the coast of the holiday island Giglio.
($1 = 0.7372 euros) (Reporting by Antonella Cinelli; writing by Stephen Jewkes; editing by Jane Baird)