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Confidentiality clause in EWI due diligence irrelevant, says Samuda

Published:Wednesday | February 5, 2014 | 1:12 PM

Monique Grange, Assistant News Editor - Radio



KINGSTON, Jamaica:

The Opposition has issued a warning to Energy Minister Phillip Paulwell against signing off on a license to Energy World International (EWI) to undertake the 360 mega watt project unless he is perfectly satisfied that there are no factors that could affect the completion of the project within the prescribed time.




Despite the concerns raised about EWI since it won the bid to build the plant, the Energy Minister has said that he intends to sign the license once the Office of Utilities Regulation (OUR) presents an approval to him.



Opposition Spokesman on Energy Karl Samuda is also cautioning the OUR against recommending a contract without careful consideration and regard for the reservations that have been expressed.



Samuda says before a recommendation is made, the regulator must be certain that every investigation is undertaken with justifiable reasons for going forward.



He says any attempt to rush the matter at the expense of Jamaican consumers would be regrettable.



Samuda says while he’s hopeful for a smooth completion of the contract, the plant must not be constructed at the expense of an appropriate review of the preferred bidder.



He says Paulwell runs the risk of causing tremendous difficulties for his government if he signs off prematurely on the license.



Samuda says a confidentiality clause regarding the due diligence report on EWI is irrelevant.



He says he sees no need for a confidentiality provision in seeking to determine if the preferred bidder has the ability to complete the job.



The OUR has said it would risk opening itself up to lawsuits should it publish the due diligence report as it had entered into a strict non-disclosure agreement with the suppliers of the information contained in the document.



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