A decision to award the $400-million water treatment project to Kuwait's giants Khorafi group and their international partners, was adopted by a unanimous decision, the group said Saturday, April 7.
The project was awarded by a unanimous decision made by "the technical committee on July 10, 2000 and the Central Tenders Committee on January 29, 2001," the group said in a statement.
The two decisions were confirmed by the Kuwaiti cabinet on March 11, said Khorafi group, which won the project along with Ionics of the US, amid fierce competition from two other consortia comprising Kuwaiti and French companies.
The Kuwaiti-French consortium consisting of Kuwait's International Projects Development Co. (IPDCO), French Vivendi Water and others, which came second, last week brought a lawsuit alleging discrepancies in the award of the tender.
The lawsuit said "the tender award decision was illegal and violated the project's Tender Documents and Kuwait's Tenders Laws." The court is expected to begin looking into the case within the next two weeks.
Khorafi group statement affirmed that the award decision was made only after extensive technical, environmental and legal studies and was based on the consortium's best offer.
The winning consortium will build a sewage treatment plant in Sulaibiya, some 30 kilometers (19 miles) west of Kuwait City, and sell its output of treated water to the state for irrigation use.
Kuwait, a desert state, gets more than 90 percent of its drinking water from five major water desalination and power plants, and the rest comes from underground brackish water. — (AFP, Kuwait City)
© Agence France Presse 2001
© 2001 Mena Report (www.menareport.com)