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DPM: Govt doing what it can to help smaller contractors

The government is doing what it can to expand the pool of qualified contractors that can successfully bid on large domestic and international projects, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance Peter Turnquest said following the controversy surrounding the awarding of contracts to Bahamas Hot Mix for a water improvement project in the Family Islands.

Last week, the president of one of the companies that unsuccessfully bid on the three projects slated for Crooked Island and Long Island expressed frustration that his smaller company had lost out to the construction giant.

Five companies submitted bids for the project, which is being spearheaded by the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB).

Turnquest said it is the government’s aim to properly prepare as many contractors and business persons as possible to succeed in the competitive industry.

“This is an area that I would certainly defer to the minister of works, but I do know that the ministry of works has had some seminars with respect to improving the capacity and qualification of contractors to qualify for these kinds of works,” Turnquest told reporters at Government House yesterday.

“So I’m sure that will continue on. In addition to that, through the Small Business Development Centre and other training initiatives, we are helping to increase the knowledge of these contractors and other business persons in respect to the overall conduct of business, on how to prepare themselves to take advantage of opportunities that exist.

“So, I think…the technical work that the ministry of works is doing to improve capacity and the work that we’re doing to improve business knowledge will help to expand the pool of qualified contractors that can bid on any project whether it’s domestic or international, which is certainly our aim.”

Minister of Public Works Desmond Bannister said last week that contracts are awarded to the company that has the lowest evaluated bid and is deemed to be the most qualified to perform the contract satisfactorily.

Paige McCartney

Business Reporter at The Nassau Guardian
Paige joined The Nassau Guardian in 2010 as a television news reporter and anchor. She has covered countless political and social events that have impacted the lives of Bahamians and changed the trajectory of The Bahamas.
Paige started working as a business reporter in August 2016.
Education: Palm Beach Atlantic University in 2006 with a BA in Radio and Television News
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