Govt assures of level playing field for contractors

─ Finance Minister meets Contractors Association

DPI, Guyana, Monday, February 4, 2019

The General Contractors Association of Guyana (GCAG) met with Minister of Finance, Winston Jordan, on Monday morning, to discuss several issues of concern to its members.

On their list were matters relating to; Financial Security Requirements; bid bonds, mobilisation, performance bonds and the tendering process, as well as the evaluation criteria for the award of contracts.

In that specific area, the association noted these factors that eliminate most contractors; average annual turnover, technical qualifications, financial capabilities and equipment capability.

The group discussed their concerns with the Minister, who in turn gave the assurance that government will ensure there is a level playing field for all contractors.

However, Minister Jordan noted that many of the issues outlined by the association require creative approaches, which have to be done at the level of the association and not directly by the government.

“I will ask the chairman and his board to look into what is possible but right now I don’t see a way around bid bonds and mobilisation advances and bid security… In my dealings with contractors, it will require creative approaches but these are not within the realm of government, but within the realm of the contractor’s association,” said Minister Jordan.

Chairman of the National Procurement and Tender Administration, Berkeley Wickham, who accompanied the minister to the meeting, says much of the criteria GCAC has concerns with are in keeping with best practices and could not be removed.

“We are bound by the procurement act of 2003; it says from the beginning that every supplier and contractor wanting to participate in procurement proceedings must qualify by meeting the following criteria; possesses and have access to technical competent, financial resources, equipment and other physical facilities, managerial capabilities, reliability, experience, reputation and the personnel to do the job” noted Wickham.

The contractors present at today’s meeting included current President of the GCAG, Cort-Rogers, Past-President Aubrey Jones, Secretary, Jonette April, Committee Members; Elroy Adams and Shefetah Tzedeq.

Felecia Valenzuela

Image: Giovanni Gajie

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