VOL NO REGD NO DA 1589

Saturday, February 25, 2006

HEADLINE

POLITICS & POLICIES

METRO & COUNTRY

VIEWS & REVIEWS

EDITORIAL

LETTER TO EDITOR

COMPANIES & FINANCE

BUSINESS & FINANCE

LEISURE & ENTERTAINMENT

MARKET & COMMODITIES

SPORTS

WORLD

 

FE Specials

FE Education

Urban Property

Monthly Roundup

Saturday Feature

Asia/South Asia

 

Feature

13th SAARC SUMMIT DHAKA-2005

WOMEN & ECONOMY

57th Republic Day of India

US TRADE SHOW

 

 

 

Archive

Site Search

 

HOME

HEADLINE
 
Support to future infrastructure projects likely to face hurdles
WB goes tough on graft, cancels 14 road contracts
FE Report
2/25/2006
 

          Bangladesh stands to miss out future aid programmes of the World Bank (WB) if unbridled graft remains an albatross around the nation's neck.
The cancellation of 14 road contracts by the Washington-based lending agency on the ground of corrupt bidding has strengthened suspicion that Dhaka could forfeit its eligibility for future lending on infrastructure projects.
"The bank has cancelled 14 road contracts in Bangladesh because of corrupt bidding. Two government officials have since been fired, and the WB plans to impose ban on the involvement of the private firms concerned in future WB contracts", says a recent report of the Washington Post.
Official sources fear if the trend continues, the WB may withhold its promised assistance for the promotion of the country's infrastructure projects.
"We continue to press the government for making the tendering process of the projects in sectors such as power and road more transparent and," a WB official said while giving his reaction to the Post report.
Non-transparent bidding process in the power sector often prompts the government agencies concerned to go for re-tendering, the WB official said.
"The reason of re-tendering is not hard to find Ö It has become a common phenomenon in the power sector," he said, referring to the recent remarks of Christine Wallich, the Bank's Country Director.
"But such corrupt practices cannot go unabated. If the government turns a deaf ear to the Bank's call for curbing corruption, the country may see its aid squeeze in near future," he said.
During his visit to Bangladesh, WB President Paul Wolfowitz said lavish election financing comes from corruption in large infrastructure projects, with the power sector becoming "a tempting target".
Pointing his finger at the latest inclusion of Congo on the Bank's corruption watch list, the WB official said it should serve as an eye opener for Bangladesh as the country's fight against corruption remains more or less confined in rhetoric.
It may be mentioned that the WB recently put Bangladesh, Chad and Kenya, India and Argentina on its watch list due to problems of corruption.
The global anti-graft body, Transparency International, has rated Bangladesh as the most corrupt nation in the world for the five years in a row.
The Post report mentioned that the Bank had held up $800 million in lending to Indian health projects. Indian politicians were said to have their hands on the health funds, so Wolfowitz blocked the loans.
The Bank has frozen lending to Chad, whose government had reneged on a promise to spend its oil revenue on poverty reduction. It took some courage to admit that the curse of oil remained unbroken.
The Bank has frozen five loans to Kenya because of corruption, though it did go ahead with a project to improve Kenya's financial management.
The Bank has interrupted a project in Argentina that topped up the wages of poor workers. Some of the money seems to have greased the ruling Peronist Party's electoral machine before elections in 2003, and the government has brought charges against one senior official and fired 10 others.
The report said that the Bank has postponed debt relief for Congo. A team from the International Monetary Fund had certified that the country deserved relief, and the Bank was supposed to fall in line last Thursday.
The punitive action against the errant nations is part of Wolfowitz's global push for reining in the massive corruption.

 

 
  More Headline
WB goes tough on graft, cancels 14 road contracts
WB multiplies sanctions against corrupt countries
Ctg garment factory fire kills 90, injures 400
PM visits burnt textile factory
Inadequate safety measures despite repeated fire incidents
Another nail in power coffin
Power crisis cripples life
Thai premier dissolves parliament, calls election
Indonesian bank chief acquitted of corruption
Govt beefs up monitoring of fuel, fertiliser supply
Privatisation of 20 SoEs uncertain
Saudis 'foil oil facility attack'
Troops seize AK-47, M-16, 500 bullets in Bandarban
Petrobangla hopes govt may withdraw suspension order
Seoul to slash regulations in hope of becoming financial hub
President Bush leaves for South Asia next Tuesday to help foster greater freedom in the region
Establishment of capital mkt Institute in the offing
India studying viability to import Myanmar gas bypassing Bangladesh
Country's primary education in dismal shape
Massive clean up in bird flu-hit W Indian town
Biman intíl flights become normal
Moderate tremor jolts Ctg city
New record in tea production
 

Print this page | Mail this page | Save this page | Make this page my home page

About us  |  Contact us  |  Editor's panel  |  Career opportunity | Web Mail

 

 

 

 

Copy right @ financialexpress.com