WZR Property

Malaysian company files for arbitration against Maldives

  • The Malaysian company is seeking a compensation of an additional USD30-40 million, on top of the USD29 million owed

Aishath Shaany
Shaaknee

K. Male' 2019 Sep 25 | Wed 16:42 2,497 local

A 3-D model of the project - Avas

WZR Property Sdn Bhd group has filed for arbitration against the Maldivian government, over an alleged breach of contract signed during the former administration.

The Malaysian company is seeking a compensation of an additional USD30-40 million, on top of the USD29 million owed.

Citing the company’s chairman Datuk Sazmi Miah,Malay Mailsaid that that it filed the arbitration at the Asian International Arbitration Centre, which will then appoint professionals to handle the case, on Tuesday.

According to Sazmi, WZR Property and six other international companies were invited to submit proposals to develop a 25-storey office complex by the republic’s Ministry of Finance and Treasury. WZR Property won the nearly USD 123 million project and was awarded the contract on 1st February 2016, and an agreement was signed between both parties a month later.

A novation agreement was signed between WZR Property and the Housing Development Corporation (HDC) on 7th March 2017.

However, Sazmi toldMalay Mailthat the company is yet to receive “a single [amount] of the payment” despite completing 20 percent of the total work and 60 per cent of the pilings for the structure.

Noting that the agreement was signed during the previous administration, Sazmi said that the current one “is kind of reluctant to continue” with the project.

“We have written them letters, went through our diplomatic channels through Wisma Putra to get them to reply to us and so on but there’s no effort from them except for several meetings with them but there was nothing in black and white whether they are continuing or not”

~ WZR Property Chairman Datuk Sazmi Miah tells Malay Mail

Following the lack of cooperation from the Maldivian government, Sazmi has accused it of “trying to buy time.” He added that the only high-profile meeting that was afforded to his team was with one of its two deputy finance minister Mohamed Firzul Hussain Firaz, and High Commissioner to Malaysia Visam Ali.

Sazmi said that WZR Property should be compensated with an additional US$30-40 million, on top of the US$29 million owed “if the Maldives government decides cancel the project.”

Furthermore, Sazmi said that he expects the Maldivian government to honour the contract and “see things through no matter if you change the government.”

“We hope that they will take this matter seriously, as it involves our livelihoods, our good relations”

~ WZR Property Chairman Datuk Sazmi Miah tells Malay Mail

While theMalay Mailhad contacted Ambassador Visam for a comment, she is to have told them that the government “has been in consultation and negotiation with the company” and that any additional comments could “further hinder the process.”

Last updated at: 4 weeks ago | Reviewed by: Leevan Ali

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