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Over $6.2 M spent on airport project -No tendering

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Premier Dr D Orlando Smith has disclosed that just over $6.2 million was spent up to last month on consultancies and legal fees regarding extension of the runway at Terrence B Lettsome International Airport, adding that none of the contracts was put to tender.

The premier made the disclosure in the House of Assembly yesterday while he responded to questions posed by Leader of the Opposition Andrew Fahie.

The total amount spent so far, the premier said, included the following:

$1,023,380.85 was spent with PricewaterhouseCoopers for business and financial advice

$2,605,447.79 was spent with Baker and McKenzie for legal advice and legal services

$148,597.73 was spent with WSP Canada Incorporated for revenue forecast procurement and technical performance

$458,796.32 was paid to Port and Marine Limited for support services for geotechnical investigations

$ 544,970 was spent with Geotech Associates Limited for geotechnical services

$360,000 was paid to Indigo Engineering Caribbean Group Limited for project management services

Premier Smith was asked if the tender process was brought to bear on any of the consultancies. He replied: “Those people (consultants) were selected because of their competency which was demonstrated, and the fact that they had knowledge of the areas in which we wanted them to employ their expertise.”

Turning to the proposed extension of the runway at Terrence B Lettsome International Airport, Premier Smith said no funding has been approved so far.

“No sums have been approved for the proposed physical expansion of the T B Lettsome Airport at this particular time. However, approvals were granted at various stages to engage consultants and legal representatives to assist with [inaudible] work associated with the project. As of 13 April 2017, $6,228,358.14 have been spent on consultants and legal fees,” added Premier Smith.

China Communications Construction Company (CCCC) had been selected as the preferred bidder for the runway project. The company had promised to undertake the project at a cost of $153,432,572.

In the House of Assembly yesterday, Premier Smith noted that his government has still not signed any contract regarding the runway project.

“While there have been some discussion a technical level, formal negotiations for the proposed expansion of the Terrence B Lettsome International Airport runway project has not began,” Premier Smith said, adding that all measures taken so far are in conformity with the Protocols for Effective Financial Management, as well as the Public Finance Management Act was ‘followed closely’.

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