| Written By: Hasan Al-Zaidi (YEMEN POST STAFF)
Article Date: March 31, 2008
|In a symposium organized by Al-Tagheer.net, economic experts stressed that government should bring the agreement relating to operating and developing Aden Container Terminal before parliament for discussion, and demanded it to act responsibly with this issue because the terminal is of vital economic importance to the country.
The participants also demanded the government to reconsider all agreements as to operating Aden Container Terminal, hinting all the previous agreements are not binding to the country because they harm its interest.
They further stressed that an international tender for operating Aden Terminal should be announced through which qualified and eligible companies can bid, maintaining that the bidding process should be conducted according to the tenders law, together with presenting it to parliament for approval.
Several papers have been presented during the symposium including one paper by Ayman Mohammed Nasser who pointed out that bidding or buying the government institutions should be referred to parliament for approval and later a republican decree should come next.
Political science professor Abdullah Al-Faqih warned against the new agreement signed with Dubai Ports Authority, stressing the agreement wastes Yemen’s financial rights. He also indicated that partnership of 50 percent of profits is not beneficial, and maintained this could lead other bidding companies to sue the Yemeni government.
Al-Faqih added that the bidding of the three companies was as follows:
1. Kuwaiti alliance with $462 million.
2. Philippines International Services with $451 million.
3. Dubai Ports with $297 million, hinting the best bid was offered by the Kuwaiti company and instead of declaring it as the successful bidder or having negotiations, Yemeni government decided to re-ask for new tenders.
In return, former Member of Parliament Salim bin Talib declared that the government withdrew the agreement from parliament in an effort to pass the agreement away from the parliament‘s control, adding that any agreement like that of Aden Terminal should not be signed only under the approval of parliament.
For his part, Mohamed Abdul Majeed Al-Qubati expressed his sorrow over the appalling situation of Aden Terminal, mainly because of the confused and unclear government policies.
Al-Qubati, however, indicated that Aden can be an international port and cited an American report speaking of the possibility of turning Aden Terminal into the most important free zone in the Middle East.
Economists and MPs demanded the formation of a civil coalition to defend Aden Terminal and maintained that it was a famous port in the past.
Yemeni businessman Saleh bin Fareed Al-Surimah pointed out the eligibility of his company Gulf and Kuwait Coalition Company (KGL) to operate and develop Aden Terminal and hinted that several parties cheated and beguiled in an effort to deprive KGL of it.
Al-Surimah emphasized the agreement with Dubai Ports is invalid and it abuses people’s right, hinting that if those people succeed in passing this dubious deal, this could help corrupted officials to pass the selling of other government institutions like Aden Refinery, etc. in the future.
He also requested President Saleh to act according to his constitutional responsibility to stop what he named as misuse and abuse in Aden Terminal because it does not serve the country’s interests.