WASHINGTON, March 28, 2018— The World Bank today announced the debarment of three companies and a settlement with one company in connection with sanctionable practices under projects in Bangladesh, India and Timor-Leste.
The debarments make Eckert & Ziegler BEBIG s.a., RKD Construction Pvt. Ltd. (RKD), and Egis International Indonesia ineligible to participate in World Bank Group-financed projects for periods ranging from 15 months to two years. They are part of three separate settlement agreements, under which the companies acknowledge responsibility for the underlying sanctionable practices and agree to meet specified corporate compliance conditions as a condition for release from debarment.
Belgium-based medical device company Eckert & Ziegler BEBIG s.a. has been debarred for two years in connection with fraudulent and collusive practices under the Health Sector Development Program in Bangladesh. The settlement agreement reflects the Bank’s findings that Eckert & Ziegler BEBIG s.a. engaged in fraudulent practices by misrepresenting the commission amounts it had agreed to pay to its local agent in relation to bids for two contracts, one of which the company received under the program. The Bank also found that the company and its local agent engaged in collusive practices by arranging with procurement officials to artificially inflate the prices of the company’s bids in relation to these contracts.
RKD, a construction operations company based in India, has been debarred for 18 months in connection with fraudulent practices under the Odisha State Roads Project. The project was designed to remove transport bottlenecks in targeted corridors in the state of Odisha (formerly known as Orissa). According to the facts described in the settlement agreement, RKD engaged in fraudulent practices by altering the details of financial documents to improperly obtain advance payments. Additionally, RKD staff double billed for segments of road that it had already been paid for under the project—a practice that went undetected and without corrective measures for two years. The period of debarment reflects the fact that RKD has repaid all funds improperly obtained by double billing the project.
Egis International Indonesia–a subsidiary of Egis International–was debarred for 15 months in connection with a fraudulent practice under the Road Climate Resilience Project in Timor-Leste. The project was designed to deliver sustainable climate resilient road infrastructure. According to the facts described in the settlement agreement, the joint venture involving the Egis companies misrepresented the availability of a key specialist, which is a fraudulent practice under World Bank consultant guidelines. The third company comprising the joint venture, Lelo Engineering Consultant, Unipessoal, Lda, was debarred for this fraudulent practice for 15 months following a settlement with the Bank in November 2017.
Parent company Egis International was sanctioned with conditional non-debarment for 15 months. During this period, the company remains eligible to participate in World Bank Group-financed projects if it complies with its obligations under the settlement. Otherwise, the conditional non-debarment will convert to a sanction of debarment with conditional release, and the company then will become ineligible to participate in World Bank Group-financed projects until the conditions for release set out in the settlement agreement are met.
The settlement agreements provide for a reduced period of sanction in light of the companies’ cooperation and voluntary remedial actions. As a condition for release from sanction under the terms of the settlement agreement, the companies commit to develop integrity compliance programs consistent with the principles set out in the World Bank Group Integrity Compliance Guidelines. The companies also commit to continue to fully cooperate with the World Bank Group Integrity Vice Presidency.
The debarment of Eckert & Ziegler BEBIG s.a., RKD, and Egis Indonesia qualify for cross-debarment by other multilateral development banks (MDBs) under the Agreement for Mutual Enforcement of Debarment Decisions that was signed on April 9, 2010.