P.M. BRIEFING : Japan Telecommunications Giant May Allow Bids on Architecture

From Times wire services

Telecommunications giant Nippon Telegraph & Telephone Corp. will accept a U.S. request to open design of a building to international bidding if the Japanese and U.S. governments agree it should do so, NTT’s president said today.

NTT is under pressure from U.S. companies over a 30-story building it wants to construct in Shinjuku, Tokyo.

Japan and the United States agreed in May, 1988, to open NTT building construction to foreign participation, in line with bidding procedures developed for the Kansai International Airport.

NTT has already started designing the new building with its own designers, rather than going through a bidding process, but U.S. companies say that under the 1988 accord they should have a chance at the design, an NTT spokesman said.

NTT had disagreed, saying it only had to open construction of the building to foreign firms.