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Mon 9 Nov 2009 07:33 AM

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32% Qatar infrastructure projects delayed

Public Works Authority chief admits problems with contractors on various projects.

One in three infrastructure projects handled by the Public Works Authority (Ashghal) in Qatar have been delayed amid the impact of the global economy crisis, a senior official has said.

Contracting companies that were awarded various projects had encountered a number of problems, Nasser Al Moulvi, acting general manager of Ashghal said in an interview with Arabic daily Al Sharq.

He said some of the companies took up work "beyond their capacity", while others suffered because building materials became expensive.

The escalating cost of building materials led to the failure of contractors to manage their respective projects with the payments they received in instalments from Ashghal, he added in comments published by The Peninsula on Monday.

Other reasons for delays included late changes to project designs which hit the contractors hard.

Al Moulvi, discussing the project delays, told Al Sharq: “We should also take some blame with the contracting companies. It is not entirely their fault.”

When asked if Ashghal had not been hard enough on contractors to get the job done, he added: “As a matter of policy we do not believe in penalising contractors unless driven to the wall because our focus is on seeing a project completed without compromising on quality.”

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