Govt. to import BMWs for CWC, Rio Group meeting
• will be resold locally after CWC

Kaieteur News
January 1, 2007

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The Guyana Government will soon import BMW luxury vehicles to provide transportation for officials expected in Guyana during the hosting of the Rio Summit and Cricket World Cup (CWC) next year.

President Bharrat Jagdeo said on Thursday that Government was import 20 of the vehicles, half of what was stipulated by the International Cricket Council (ICC), but decided against this, since Guyana would be using buses and other modes of transportation.

He alluded that the vehicles will be resold locally and the Government stood to benefit significantly.

Government's decision has not been readily accepted by local car dealers, who said that they were being left out of the deal. Some dealers had complained bitterly that only Central Garage, the lone importer of BMW, stood to benefit had Government gone to a dealership

President Jagdeo explained that Government will go it alone since the dealer wanted the government to waive 75 percent of the taxes which could see the Government losing $400 million in taxes.

Kaieteur News understands that the Government was hoping to use cheaper vehicles and had initially set eyes on those vehicles that were handed over to the Guyana Police Force (GPF) earlier this year.

“We opted to buy the vehicles which we intend to sell back in the market here with the taxes so that we would recover the money and much more,” President Jagdeo said.

He said that 20 vehicles will be adequate for the Rio Summit and CWC and noted that government will soon move to advertise for tenders.

“If you want to own one of these BMWs, you could put in a bid and you can give us your money now. We sign an arrangement and as soon as CWC is over we will deliver the vehicle to we don't have to give the single dealer all the concessions. If anyone has to get the concession it would be people who are putting in the bids,” Jagdeo explained.

He added that interested persons could start bidding now and if they won, the government would enter into an agreement that would allow the vehicle to be delivered as soon as CWC was over.

BMW is a German manufacturer of automobiles and motorcycles and is one of the official sponsors for CWC.

• The company has laid down in its agreement, that ICC officials will use its luxury cars and that the government hosting the matches must import them duty-free.