GMR's troubles with the Male airport continues. CNBC-TV18 has exclusive access to a letter written to the Prime Minister Manmohan Singh by a coalition member. The letter raises suspicions against both GMR and world bank body, IFC which was appointed by the Maldivian Govt to manage and run the bidding process before it was awarded to GMR, reports CNBC-TV18's Sunanda Jayaseelan.
The letter was written on the 19 September to the Prime Ministers Office's (PMO) office alleging several things both against GMR and against IFC. IFC is a World Bank’s arm, which has been appointed by the previous Maldivian government to manage and run the bidding process. No response has gone out yet from the PMO.
Here are the allegations that are being raised.
First and foremost against GMR. That GMR was allowed to charge fees and other charges at the airport which were not inline with what was agreed upon making the Male Airport therefore more expensive even then London's Heathrow Airport. It also says that the ADC which was being charged was unconstitutional and that airport acquisition cost was about USD 105 million. However, GMR on its part had paid upfront only USD 78 million and questions are being raised as to what has happened to the balance of USD 27 million.
The charges are being leveled against IFC are that it has business interest with GMR and has made plans to suite GMR rather than the national interest of Maldives.
Both GMR and IFC have responded against each of these allegations point-by-point.
GMR argues that IFC does not have any exposure to any of GMR’s projects and that the permission for project in Hyderabad was given by the Hyderabad government and not by GMR as is being alleged in that letter. It also states that the balance of that which is basically USD 27 million over and above the USD 78 million which is already been paid as upfront fees has gone to its various other charges including consultation fees to IFC.
Meanwhile, IFC explains that its advise has complied with Maldivian laws and regulations and followed all international best practices at each step of that bidding process.