US-based Bechtel Corp and other international firms are pursuing billions of dollars in unpaid bills from Saudi Arabia’s government for work done on the Riyadh metro project, according to five people familiar with the matter. Bechtel is owed around $1 billion for the transport system, a cornerstone of the government’s efforts to upgrade the traffic-clogged Saudi capital, according to four of the people. Boston Consulting Group research says Saudi capital is struggling to cope with congestion and pollution Companies working on the project - which also involves French, Spanish and Italian firms - are pursuing several billions of dollars in unpaid bills in total, two of the people said, with Bechtel owed the most. The overdue payments are related in part to construction delays and cost overruns caused by the coronavirus pandemic, which trapped some workers outside the kingdom and made it difficult to continue the pace of work on the project, three of the people said. The payments dispute took on diplomatic overtones...read more...