KATHMANDU, May 18: The government has barred the extending of timeline for the big projects to be constructed in the engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) model.
Enforcing the Directive on Procurement through EPC-2021, the Public Procurement Monitoring Office (PPMO) has maintained that big projects cannot extend their deadlines except in case of natural disasters like earthquake, fire, flood and landslide, among others.
Under the EPC model, the project design, construction and operation are handled by the contractor company. The government has envisioned building big projects like construction of tunnels, bridges, strategic roads, hydropower and irrigation, among others, through the EPC model, citing ongoing problems of extending deadlines by the contractors showing various pretexts that lead to heavy increase in project costs.
As of now, Nepal Electricity Authority has been following the EPC model to construct its projects. Recently, the Nepal Army (NA) has also taken forward the construction of the Kathmandu-Tarai Fast Track by using this model. In the absence of the related laws for the EPC model, the parliamentary Public Accounts Committee had even raised concerns over the move taken by the NA.
According to the PPMO, with the directive in effect, the government authorities will now have to abide by the new law while forwarding both domestic and international bidding processes for the projects that require high and complex technical skills.