Jun 20, 2012 News
The Chinese contractor of the US$150M Cheddi Jagan International Airport (CJIA) expansion says that while it is banned from participating in roads and bridge projects by the World Bank, there is nothing stopping it from being part of that (airport) works.
According to China Harbour Engineering Company Limited (CHEC), Guyana has nothing to fear from the World Bank banning its parent company, China Communication Constructions Company Limited (CCCC) from certain projects, and that it is unaware of any issues it (CHEC) has that would cause Guyana to lose investments.
“CHEC is also making clear that it knows of no issue arising from the matter between CCCC (China Communication Constructions Company Limited) and the World Bank that could result in Guyana losing investments if CHEC is allowed to construct the expansion of the airport in accordance with the existing agreement.”
CHEC insisted that it has already made it clear that the company has never been involved in any activity which has attracted sanctions by the World Bank or any other international agency.
CHEC made no mention of the fact that last year, Arafat ‘Koko’ Rahman, a son of the former Prime Minister of Bangladesh, Khaleda Zia, was jailed in absentia for six years for laundering millions of dollars in bribes taken from CHEC.
The statement also did not mention the fact that in November 2011, former Chairman of the China’s Hebei Port Group, Huang Jianhua, was sentenced to death for taking bribes from the CHEC and its parent company, CCCC.
In recent days, former President Bharrat Jagdeo had said that he was not against a review of that contract which was signed secretly in Jamaica last November, weeks before his two terms ended and before Guyana went to the polls to elect a new government.
There are reports now that China’s Ambassador to Guyana, Yu Wenzhe, is not against a review of the contract by the Guyana government.
According to CHEC, yesterday, the sanction against CCCC and its affiliates arose out of a matter dating back to 2002 with China Road and Bridge Corporation, which was taken over in 2005 by CCCC.
“China Harbour practices stringent anti-corruption measures and rules which are a feature of employee and service provider contracts and which are in keeping with the stern and rigorous anti-corruption standards instituted by the Government of the People’s Republic of China for all businesses organized under Chinese law, including CHEC and CCCC.”
CHEC also said that it has advanced technology, knowledge and capacity which enabled it to have successfully bid for and constructed the new international airport in Sudan at a value of US$100M; the US$100M airport project in Myanmar in the Middle East; the Chek Lap Kok Airport in Hong Kong, China; projects valued at US$879 million to carry out work on a new port of Qatar; and major Chinese port works including the Yangtze River Estuary Deepwater Channel Regulation Project, the Yantian Port close to Hong Kong, and the Waigaoqiao New Port.
“These are just a few of the more than 600 complex engineering and construction projects successfully undertaken CHEC throughout the world bringing value to satisfied client institutions, governments and people,” CHEC said.
The Chinese company also said that it is building a US$520M Cabello Port New Container Wharf Project and is in discussions for the US$460M Maritime Terminal of the Moron Petrochemical Complex.
Following the secret signing of the multi-million-dollar contract to expand CJIA in November, CHEC was thrown into the spotlight recently when Jamaica’s regulator of government contracts, Office of the Contractor General, made bombshell revelations that the World Bank has banned CHEC and its parent company, CCCC, from taking part in any of its roads and bridge contracts until 2017.
Guyana only learnt of the signing of the CJIA contract in Jamaica, through media reports carried in that country’s newspapers.
The Contractor General, Greg Christie, has been locked in a battle with the Jamaican government over a roads and highway contract that he insists was awarded in questionable circumstances. There are also similar problems in the Cayman Islands.
Despite all the revelations and countrywide concerns, the Guyana government has remained silent and is still committed to rebuilding the CJIA.
At least 1,000 persons will have to be relocated along with several farms and businesses.
In defending the CJIA contract to CHEC days after it was exposed in the Guyana media, Jagdeo had said that to secure the loan from China, Guyana had to commit to award the contract for the CJIA expansion to a Chinese company.
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