Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Bhutan government’s proposed reform upsets contractors

Bhutan’s contractors are not happy with government’s proposed reform to improve the country’s construction industry. Many fear that the new point-based evaluation system would encourage favoritism and corruption and would further delay the works of 10th five year plan which was initiated in 2008 and would continue all the way to 2013.

Wangdi Gyeltshen, Executive Director, Construction Development Board, said that Construction industry is the oldest industry of Bhutan but it did not see much growth over the year despite getting maximum budget from the government. Hence, the reform has been introduced.

Wangdi Gyeltshen said that the new system would nil the possibility of making any “guesstimate” on the part of the bidder. Earlier, government officials used to reward projects to the contractors with the lowest bid but often they failed to complete the project in time. Under this new system, contracts would not be awarded based on highest or lowest bidding but to contractors who would come up with innovative and efficient systems to complete projects.

Officials of the Human Settlement Ministry said that the resistance to the reform came from a small group of contractors and none of them from the top construction companies in the country. In the last consultation meeting, about 55 participants appeared and there were no representatives from the top contractors of the country.

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