Eight companies have pre-qualified to bid for the Norman Manley International Airport in Kingston.

In a statement yesterday, Managing Director of the Development Bank of Jamaica, Milverton Reynolds, says the bidding will result in a long-term concession agreement through a public-private partnership.

The successful bidder will operate, finance, develop and maintain the airport.

Mr. Reynolds says the DBJ will now issue a request for proposal to the pre-qualified firms.

They will then be allowed to conduct due diligence to support the preparation and submission of their bids.

Cabinet is expected to announce the preferred bidder by the fourth quarter of this fiscal year.

An invitation for pre-qualification was launched internationally on February 20.

The DBJ says nine applications were received by the May 1 deadline.