[www.inewsguyana.com] – Chairman of the Private Sector Commission, Major General Retired, Norman McLean has called on the government and the Berbice Bridge Company Inc (BBCI) to re-enter negotiations in order to get a win/ win formula as it relates to the reduction of tolls for crossing the bridge.
During his address at the opening of the Berbice Exposition and Trade Fair on September 18, McLean said, “The Private Sector Commission, as a concerned entity, invited the BBCI to a meeting on September 8, 2015 to seek to resolve the impasse. The discussion was fruitful and we found that there were a large number of Banks and Pension Funds that had invested millions into this venture; a venture which benefited the people of Guyana and particularly those in Berbice.”
The PSC Chairman indicated that at the time of the announcement for reduced rates, it seemed as if the Bridge Company had not consulted with all its partners hence there are a few loose ends on the deal between the government and shareholders.
“As this is a private/public partnership, the BBCI wanted to consult its shareholders”, pointing out that new terms and agreement would need to be looked at.
The PSC Chairman highlighted the fact that the bridge company is seeking to provide fifty years of service, which he described as being “far-fetched and unreasonable.”
Turning his attention to the implementation of the river taxis, McLean said he is in support of it, pointing out that the Demerara Harbour Bridge has been in existence for approximately 37 years and water taxis have been operating in the Demerara River ever since.
The Government has announced that several categories of commuters, including teachers, nurses, pensioners and school children would be able to travel free for a month via the river taxis in Berbice.