Where we are and where we will be

Where we are and where we will be
The idea of Edinburgh is a combination of place, soul and symbolic leadership of a nation

Friday, 20 February 2009

Tram brinkmanship is not a new ploy

This is not the first time BSC; the consortium delivering trams in Edinburgh have tried to hold the city to ransom. When the contract was just about to be signed last year, I was briefed as Labour leader along with the leaders of the other groups on the Council that at the last minute that the consortium wanted another huge sum, (somewhere between £12m and £15m), because of alleged "increased steel prices". We all knew it was brinkmanship and officials were encouraged to beat them down hard which they did significantly.

The SNP/Libdems need to face BSC down again. That is what they understand. Stare them in the eye and say no, you can't hold us to ransom and your attitude is unacceptable. That's exactly what they would do where they in our place and we should do the same to them. It's the only language these guys understand. My deep concern is that the Libdem don't have the bottle for brinkmanship and the SNP want trams to fail. These are bad times indeed for our city.


jOhn. said...

Surely if as Bilfinger Berger says, that TIE have not met all contractually agreed conditions then the company have every right, indeed they have a duty to their shareholders to demand a renegotiation of the contract.

Indeed the naughty news from council sources that they were trying to make up a shortfall in Norway cannot be further from the truth. The company not only made an excellent profit for 2008 but indeed proposed a higher dividend for their shareholders.

"Bilfinger Berger’s financial situation was not impaired by the crisis in the financial markets. The Group has no short-term refinancing needs. Sufficient financial means are available for further development of the Group.

Despite significant investment activity, the end-year cash and marketable securities remained at a high level of €720 million (2007: €796 million). At €357 million (2007: €325 million), cash flow from operating activities exceeded the very good figure from the previous year."

Ewan said...

If is the key word. If what hear is correct and contracts had not been met then they have aright to complain. If however, as I heard today for the first time, the contract was 8 months behind, then we neeed to knwo whow as 8 months behaind and why were the consequences of that not ebing dealt with long before the tarffic moves on princes street were made which suggested that all was honky dorry. I don't think this is connected to Norway but I do thin k some-ones head must roll but i cannot judge that until I know who knew what when and what they did about it.

Thanks for your post


jOhn said...

I agree totally with your reply. I am sure you will agree it was totally remiss of the politicians from all sides, including independent, demanding that BB get back to work and stop ripping the taxpayers off because they lost a wedge on a road in Norway.

Heads should roll but it doesn't seem to the way things go in major public works projects in Edinburgh, Scotland or indeed the UK.

What I can tell you is that the board of BB will take action against the BBUK MD and others if they are found to be lacking. Professor Schetter does not suffer fools gladly.

Ewan said...

Thanks John, you have helped shed a wee bit new light on this

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