Jamaica going ahead with controversial CHEC deal

| 12/07/2012

GregChristieP20060919IA.jpg(CNS): Despite the on-going concerns of Jamaica’s contractor general the government says it still intends to go ahead with the signing of a deal with the China Communications Construction Company – the parent company of China Harbour Engineering Company. According to the local media Transport Minister Dr Omar Davies said “some agreement” will be signed next week that will be import to the future of Jamaica's economy. According to the Gleaner the minister has not revealed details about the nature of the deal but it is believed to be connected to further infrastructure projects. The news comes against the backdrop of a courtroom battle between the government and Greg Christie (left)

Jamaican government officials are currently in dispute with the Office of the Contractor General over a Cabinet decision to appoint an independent oversight panel to advise on three projects including the north-to-south link of Highway 2000. Davies has taken the matter to the Supreme Court, seeking to bar Contractor General Greg Christie from compelling members of the oversight panel to report to him.

The Chinese company is stirring up controversy across the Caribbean as it becomes more and more involved in major capital development projects.

CHEC has also been touted by the Cayman Islands premier as the company he wishes to develop the long awaited cruise berthing facilities in George Town, but McKeeva Bush has also come up against problems as a result of the way he selected CHEC.

The UK has warned the premier that it will not approve the deal he  is currently negotiating with CHEC until the process returns to best international procurement practice which means it will need to be properly tendered based on a strategic business need.
Bush has however remained defiant and stated in the Legislative Assembly recently that “they will not stop him” in his goal to work with CHEC on the cruise port project. Bush said it was unrealistic to try and attain some UN ideal in connection with the goal to get a cruise facility on Grand Cayman and that the Chinese represented the best option as the CIG did not have the money.

The proposed deal has risen from a $180million estimated project to one exceeding $300million and one which will see the Chinese firm take a percentage of the fees paid by passengers to the port authority as well as a 50 year lease on what is understood to be a mammoth upland development that will require land reclamation and some fear will dwarf the current downtown area.


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Comments (9)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    Oh thank God….UK please save us from ourselves…Please UK come put handcuffs om and save us.


    Long live The Queen…..We love you

  2. Thunder Storm says:

    Mad-mac must be their Add-weiser!!!!………They must be drinking the same "coco-nuts" water!!

    • Anonymous says:

      Actually it seems to me this is what the people of Cayman were paying for beloved Mac to learn from Jamaican politics a short while back.

  3. BananaRepublic says:

    It is in times like these that we truly see the benefit of Cayman's decision to remain with the UK when Jamaica went independent. Jamaica's Contractor General deserves a medal! He is a rare breed indeed.

    • Anonymous also says:

      The only benefit of remaining with the UK is if the UK steps in and stops all that is bout to be done by our "Leader".  ie. CHEC and for Dart alliance.  if they do not then it for naught.  We are history.

    • Anonymous says:

      Anon 17;09

      And the UK is laughing so hard at you bunch of idiots.

      Cameron himself went to china and brought back 2 billion pounds of investments to England.

      The UK chanscellor has and is erging ( inviting )the Chinese to come and invest in their transportation, energy and utilities. The UK must be looking at u and saying how can a human be so damn fool. when the whole world is in a financial mess, and looking assistance 24-7 we have fools here using politics to finish us off as a economical stable country.

      You idiots , check the news and see what Greece and Spain are going through…i wish you all would just leave the country and let the smart people get on with their lives.



  4. Mark says:

    Read my lips. There will be No Chinese deal in Cayman. When the truth surrounding the financial irregularities (which apparently is standard operating procedure for the Chinese) comes out, there will be some politicians who will have to face an angry crowd.

    The jewel of the Chinese offering is the casino that they buried in the package. Of course this will require a change in legislation and those of us with long memories will remember that the Honourable Premier promised a referendum on this over 2 years ago and like lots of his promises, they have yet to be fulfilled.

    There will be no Chinese deal in Cayman. These politicians have turned us into a bunch of "sodja crabs" each one of us clambering over the other trying to grab the cash that will get us out of the burning bucket.

    I repeat. There will be no Chinese deal in Cayman.

    • NeoSurvivor says:

      Your "sodja crabs" analogy is spot on;    If the CHEC deal were to go through, I suspect many of us would revert from protesters to little minions scrambling for the crumbs on the pan set out for us.    Crabs are great for cleaning a pan with burned food, but they are never given the food from the table.  

      Likewise, we would see a slim few Caymanians benefit to the disregard of the country as a whole.    Well, I won't battle my brethren for the crumbs.    I don't want the crumbs;   If I don't have work, I'll continue to grow my own food, and fish a little — at least until that is also outlawed.  

      If anyone actually supports the CHEC deal, please ask yourself this:   If it is such a stellar deal, why couldn't it be brought forth under a legal tendering?   There is only one answer.  

      I hope and pray Mark is right, that there will be no CHEC deal — at least not without proper procedures being followed.   Even then, Idon't believe we need all the glitter that comes with it.   The glitter is obfuscation — we need a simple finger pier, nothing more.   Put it out to bid and award it to a Caymanian contractor for several tens of millions less than this CHEC deal.   I firmly believe that it is a horror of the highest magnitude to obligate our children's future.  

      p.s.  Here's a hint:   If there is no way to finance it internally, we can't afford it.   WHOA!   What a novel concept. 

    • Anonymous says:

      We Mark your words, sir.