Questions BIRN sent World Bank

January 16, 2015

Questions BIRN sent World Bank’s Headquarters in Washington on January 12:

1.    How did the World Bank establish that this tender was transparent? Whose expertise provided the basis for the statement of Vesna Kostic, the World Bank’s spokesperson?

2.    What exactly was World Bank’s role in the tender conducted in July 2014, months before the contract was signed between Serbia and World Bank? Did the Bank’s representatives participate in drafting the tender conditions, did they monitor the bidding process, have they seen the bids, did they participate in the final selection of the winning company?

3.    How did the World Bank monitor this tender? Who was in charge for the World Bank?

4.    Was the Bank aware that one of the conditions for the tender was that bidders must have a reference in this business?

5.    Have you become aware that the chosen consortium had no such reference?

6.    Have you become aware that Dragoljub Zbiljić, the director of winning company, is on trial for tax evasion? Is this in accordance with the regulations of the World Bank?

7.    Who made the decision in the World Bank to award a loan without conditioning the receiver to respect World Bank tender procedures? What were the legal grounds?

•    Additionally, we would like to ask you to help us set up an interview with a World Bank expert with whom we can discuss in detail the tender procedure that was conducted.
•    Also, please find attached a FOIA request for all documentation that the World Bank has in relation to this tender.

Questions BIRN sent to World Bank headquarters in Washington on January 14:

1.    Did the World Bank oblige Serbia to launch a TENDER to choose a company/consortium for dewatering Tamnava mine (instead of choosing a company/consortium in some other procedure allowed by the Serbian Public Procurement Law in case of natural disaster)?

2.    Was the World Bank the one to allow Serbia to conduct a tender in accordance to regular tender procedures prescribed by Serbian Public Procurement Law, and not to conduct it accordance with World Bank guidelines and regulations?

3.    Was the World Bank aware that a Romanian partner in the winning consortium, Ness Proiect Europe, is on trial in Romania along with several politicians and businessmen for soliciting around 1 million euro in bribes from companies to grant them public contracts for clearing snow between 2010 and 2013? Is this in accordance with the regulations of the World Bank?

•    We request a document – an official report on this tender made by the World Bank experts who reviewed the tender.
•    We also need the names of the people who reviewed the tender procedure, so we can approach them for interviews.