Bechtel and Parsons tipped for Iraq reconstruction

17 April 2003
Bechteland Parsons Engineering Corporation are the remaining contenders for the estimated $600 million capital construction contract in the $ 1,700 million US Agency for International Development (USAID) relief and reconstruction programme, construction industry sources have told MEED. Executives from both companies have said they do not comment on projects which have not been confirmed.

Fluor Daniel, Kellogg Brown & Root, Perini International, Parsons Engineering Corporation, Louis Berger International and Bechtel, all American firms with experience of major reconstruction projects in developing countries, received requests for proposals for the contract, the largest so far put out to tender in the USAID programme.

Reuters reported on 16 April that worries about excessive liability risks have delayed the announcement of the award of the contract, which USAID had hoped to confirm a month ago. US government experts are reviewing federal law 85-804 which permits the US government to protect commercial entities facing exceptional risks. It is uncertain whether the law is applicable in the Iraq reconstruction contract. The USAID may be obliged to seek either a White House order or a special congressional resolution.

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