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JUST IN: Government withdraws EWI licence for mega energy project

Published:Monday | May 5, 2014 | 6:13 PM

The Government has reportedly withdrawn the licence to Energy World International (EWI) for the construction of a 381-megaWatt energy plant in Jamaica.

Our sources say the prime minister instructed that the licence be withdrawn this morning after EWI failed to meet a 10 o’clock deadline to post a US$36.85 million performance bond.

It is understood that the prime minister is inclined to having the entire process put back to tender.

The instruction to withdraw EWI's licence came just six days after the company issued a statement saying it had deposited the US$36.85 million for its performance bond to its Hong Kong bankers.

The Energy Minister, Phillip Paulwell later said he was giving EWI sufficient time for its bankers to undertake the necessary due diligence.

EWI has explained that it was late in depositing the money with its bankers because of what it says were circumstances beyond its control.

Energy World International was expected to post the bond by April 24, that's 10 days after it received the licence for the energy project.

In its statement, Energy World did not disclose the circumstances that caused the late deposit but the Inter-American Development Bank has confirmed that it has pulled out of any process to help to finance EWI.

EWI was selected for the project after the first-choice bidder, Azurest Cambridge, failed to meet a deadline to pay the initial bond.


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