This story was leaked to the Nation News and CBC a week ago. Why hasn’t the Barbados news media covered this story?
Our thanks to a special friend who sent us the following letter. For the record, none of the people named in the letter had anything to do with delivering this letter to Barbados Free Press.
Will Prime Minister Thompson, the Government of Barbados and UWI award a major construction contract to the Communist Chinese under such unfair conditions?
Will the Barbados news media now be embarrassed enough to cover the story?
I guess all those free trips to China for the politicians and the press have to be paid for in some way!
Barbados Contractors’ Association
C/O Moorjani Caribbean Limited, Jackson
St. Michael, Barbados
Phone: 246-421-4027 Fax 246-424-7374 e-mail: email@example.com
June 13, 2008
Ms. Barbara Forde,
Cave Hill Campus,
University of West Indies,
Ref.: Construction of School of Business
Our members are in receipt of the names of the applicants for the pre-qualification of the Cave Hill School of Business. We notice that three Chinese companies have applied to be pre-qualified. Please take note of the strong objection by this Association of the inclusion of these companies on the following grounds:
1. We believe the 3 Chinese companies are owned by the Government of China. These companies are not independent as the management of the companies is interchanged depending on the territory they are working in. The construction of World Bank funded contract for the construction of Pogson Hospital in St. Kitts was won by China Jiangsu Canada limited and the contract was signed by China Jiangsu Trinidad Limited. Both companies had tendered the project supposedly independently. It is now customary that more than 1 Chinese company bids the World Bank or CDB funded projects. It leads us to speculate the independence of the bids which is a requirement of all the Tenders.
2. In accordance with the rules of CDB, these companies are supposed to operate as if these are independent private enterprise companies. To date no such proof has been forwarded by CDB to show transparently that such is the case. The case above in item 1 clearly indicates that these companies cannot be operating as independent companies.
3. Majority of the Labour engaged by the Chinese companies is from China thus denying local workers the opportunities of employment.
4. Wages paid by the Chinese companies to their Chinese workers are 25% of the wages paid by the Barbadian contractors to their workers. The conditions, under which the Chinese workers work, violate Human rights treaty and the UN convention of the treatment of migrant Labour, to which Barbados is a signatory.
5. Majority of materials are imported from China, which denies opportunities to Caricom indigenous business enterprises.
6. The Chinese companies enjoy taxation advantages in Barbados that are not available to our members.
7. Our members cannot compete with the Chinese companies because we are not tendering on a level playing field.
8. The University of West Indies is a unifying icon of the people of the West Indies. We urge the University to come to the forefront of our struggle to create fair and equitable treatment of Barbadian citizens and our Caricom Partners.
BARBADOS CONTRACTORS’ ASSOCIATION
CC The Prime Minister of Barbados, Hon David Thompson
Minister of Labour Attn: Hon Arnie Walters. M. P.
Minister of Economic Affairs Attn: Hon. Maxine McClean.
Dr. Hillary Beckles Principal, Cave Hill campus of The University of West Indies
Caribbean Development Bank. Attn: Dr Compton Bourne, President