Latviski English По-русски
Saturday 17.03.2018 | Name days: Ģertrūde, Gerda, Gertrūde

Ventspils businessmen suspect political pressure in boat restoration procurement case

(No Ratings Yet)

Baltic news, News from Latvia, BNN.LV, BNN-NEWS.COM, BNN-NEWS.RUVentspils businessmen are shocked about Ventspils City Council’s and Seaside Open-Air Museum’s behaviour in the tendering procedure for the restoration of an old sail ship, choosing in favour of an offer that is EUR 51,700 more expensive offer, said Ventspils businessman Vigo Svikekalns in a publication.

Ventspils boat master and businessman Svikekalns is confused over Ventspils Seaside Open-Air Museum unreasonable choice, considering his and his colleagues’ experience in reconstruction of old boats in Latvia and abroad. Residents have already turned to the Procurement Monitoring Bureau to challenge the museum’s decision, because the main criterion used in the procedure was low price.

At the beginning of the year, the museum announced an open tendering procedure for the restoration of an old fishing boat and sail ship (procurement Nr.VM2017/1). Offers with the lowest price were chosen as the main criterion.

It was also mentioned in the report that V.S. Būve Salons, Vigo Svikekalns and Normunds Blumanis together submitted an offer with a price of EUR 119,556.58 (without VAT).

In spite of the lower price, the tendering procedure’s committee picked the offer of OM Design and Yachtland, which was EUR 171,303.51 (without VAT). It was also the most expensive offer.

Vigo Svikekalns comments the situation the following way: «This decision as explained with the argument that our offer was allegedly unjustifiably cheap.»

Continuing, he expresses his opinion on the matter: «This is incomprehensible and untrue. We have decades worth of experience building and restoring boats. Our services are chosen by foreign and local clients specifically because of their quality. This is why we can feel safe about our proposed price: it is competitive and appropriate for the quality on display. Our work and its quality is well-known in Ventspils. We have got the impression that the museum’s decision was done intentionally with pressure ‘from above’. We suspect it was a political decision, considering my involvement in politics,» says Svikekalns.

The boat master admits that he has reconstructed and built 27 boats 6 to 22 metres long in the past 30 years. He learned his skills in cities like Düsseldorf, Hamburg, Cannes, Nice and Helsinki.

He adds that this example shows how easy it is to interpret regulations to secure beneficial decisions – a cheap price is interpreted as unjustifiably low because the other is incapable of offering a competitive offer.

«Unfortunately, this situation does not benefit Ventspils residents, because, first of all, EUR 51,000 will be taken from their needs and, secondly, instead of entrusting work to locals, it is given to Riga’s specialists. This will result in taxes flowing from the city. On top of that, this whole situation only reduces residents’ trust in Ventspils City Council and its institutions,» says Svikekalns.

It is mentioned in the report that businessmen have noticed another problem – they believe the committee lacked the competence in the field the procurement was organized in.


Leave a reply

Remembrance day of Latvian Legionnaires passes with shouts and two arrests

The Legionnaires’ remembrance procession in Riga on Friday, 16 March, passed peacefully. Nevertheless, several conflicts did take place among differently-minded people near the Freedom Monument. Two individuals were arrested by police.

Influenza intensity in Latvia – moderate when compared to other European nations

A comparison of influenza activity in Europe shows that it is high or very high in several countries. Latvia’s influenza intensity is considered moderate, as noted by epidemiologist Raina Nikiforova.

Hourly labour costs in Latvia grew 7.3% in 2017

Compared to Q4 2016, in Q4 2017 hourly labour costs rose by 54 cents or 7.3 %, reaching EUR 8.02. Seasonally adjusted data show identical changes – rise of 7.3 %.

Rietumu Banka claims it has not worked with high-risk clients for years

Rietumu Banka has been steadily rejecting high-risk clients for years and has significantly reduced the volume of transactions, as mentioned by the bank’s representatives.

Lithuanian and Estonian businessmen are ahead of Latvia in terms of investments

In Latvia, 36% of small and medium-sized companies have plans to invest in the development of their business this year. In Estonia and Lithuania, on the other hand, the proportion of businesses with development plans is 42% and 46%, respectively, according to results of a recent study performed by SEB Bank.

Russia pledges maximum pressure on UK amid ex-spy poisoning row

Russian top diplomat in the UK has envisaged on Friday, March 16, that the Kremlin would use maximum pressure on London as Moscow insists it has not been involved in the poisoning of a former Russian-British double agent with a Russian-made chemical weapon, as has been found by British investigators.

Latvia’s ministry: Crimea’s annexation is illegal

18 March 2018 will mark four years since the Russian Federation violated Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity by annexing the Crimean Peninsula and causing military aggression in the country’s eastern region. With its actions the Russian Federation has violated international law and basic principles of international relation, says Latvia’s Foreign Affairs Ministry.

Building gas pipe to Finland, Estonia to organise works for EUR 135 million

Continuing the works on the Balticconnector gas pipeline between Estonia and Finland, the Estonian natural gas network company Elering has stated that around 135 million euros, including a 98-million-euro funding from the European Union, will be invested in the project.

Replacement of cash registers rejected by SRS would cost half a million euros

The State Revenue Service has declined 18,000 cash registers as unfitting for requirements established by the Cabinet of Ministers. Fixing the problems found in them would cost half a million euros, as reported by LNT News.

Latvian Anti-Nazi Committee presented with protest restrictions on 16 March

Administrative District Court has compiled a shortened ruling, in which it rejected Latvian Anti-Nazi Committee’s application and preserved the decision imposed by Riga City acting CEO on 13 March 2018 on establishing restrictions on the planned gathering and protest act for 16 March unchanged.

U.S. introduces Russian sanctions for election meddling and cyber-attacks

Washington has introduced sanctions against 19 Russian individuals and five entities blaming them for attempts to sway the 2016 U.S. election and perceived cyber-attacks.

Slovakian PM Fico replaced with fellow party member

Slovakian head of government Robert Fico has stepped down after the murder of a journalist shed light on corruption in Slovakia, prompting nationwide protests. The long-standing Prime Minister had offered to resign earlier this week if the ruling coalition was allowed to finish its term.

Weekends will be cold and sunny in Latvia; next week will have volatile weather

Starting with Sunday, 18 March, air temperature in Latvia will rise above zero in most of the country, as reported by State Environment, Geology and Meteorology Centre.

Lithuania’s ruling LFGU party remains unscathed by scandals

It seems that, for now, Lithuania‘s ruling Farmers and Green Union has been nearly damage-proof despite the lambasting.

Latvian Civic Alliance: non-government sector should aim towards cooperation

Latvian Civic Alliance has invited the management of Latvia’s Chamber of Commerce and Industry to meet to discuss ongoing cooperation between organizations representing the business sector and the NGO sector.

Saeima rejects National Alliance’s proposal to make 16 March an official remembrance day

Latvia’s Saeima has decided to reject the proposal submitted by the National Alliance on making 16 March an official remembrance day.

43.6% of Latvian households have difficulties with making ends meet

In 2017 the share of households admitting that pay for usual necessary expenses with difficulty or great difficulty constituted 43.6 %, which is 1.5 percentage points more than in 2016.

Saeima voices support for Rail Baltica project’s progression

On Thursday, 15 March, the Saeima made a decision to support Rail Baltica project’s progression. In its decision, the parliament invited Latvia’s Cabinet of Ministers to provide all the necessary support for the project’s successful realization to ensure the project is realized in accordance with established terms and does not lose funding or support from the European Union, as reported by Saeima’s press-service.

Fast snow shovelling linked to cardiac fatalities, Finnish study finds

In Finish doctoral study, it has been concluded that snow should be shovelled calmly, not provoking stress and increased adrenaline in human blood that could lead to cardiac arrest.

Riga’s mayor spent at least eight million euros of residents’ money to promote himself

Over the course of the past three years, at least EUR 8 million of residents’ money has been used to promote the image of the Mayor of Riga Nils Ušakovs. This money was used to buy media, employ young members of Harmony, and finance ‘in-house protestors’ and using social networks, as estimated by Re:Baltica research journalism center.

Slovenia's head of government resigns amid protests and struggling railway investment

The Slovenian head of government Miro Cerar has stepped down from office in reaction to troubles with an expensive railway project and mounting opposition by trade unions.

NAF Commander: Latvia and Estonia have joint military procurements planned

Latvia and Estonia have joint military procurements planned, Commander of Latvia’s National Armed Forces Leonīds Kalniņš told journalists after his meeting with Commander of Estonia’s Defence Forces Riho Terras.

Estonia's switch to free higher education proved right choice, says Ratas

The switch to free higher education made by Estonia in 2013 has proved to be the right choice for a small country, even though critics have pointed to potentially less motivated students, has stated the Estonian Prime Minister Jüri Ratas.

President: we will not give away our scientists’ ideas for free

It is necessary to concentrate all resources on research performed by Latvian scientists with patent potential. This will help secure returns for Latvia’s national economy, said President of Latvia Raimonds Vējonis during his meeting with rector of Riga Technical University Artūrs Zeps.

Members of the European Parliament propose avoiding «trade wars»

MEPs emphasized in debates regarding the trade restrictions imposed by USA that European Union should not get involved in a trade war, and be ready to protect its citizens, as BNN was told by EP Information office in Latvia.

Newest comments