Halliburton Defends Iraq Sales, Contracts
EFL Reuters from Worldwire
The head of Halliburton Co. HAL.N on Friday denied allegations by lawmakers that the company has been gouging the U.S. government by charging excessive prices for fuel for Iraq, saying it has negotiated fair and competitive prices in a difficult environment. "We awarded the fuel acquisition contract to the suppliers who could meet the very strict requirements defined by our client, the United States government," Chairman and Chief Executive David Lesar said in an op-ed piece published in The Wall Street Journal.
Sub-contractors want more pay when they are being shot at by the populace. Also cash is required to pay for protections from the local shieks.
"The requirements included the ability to acquire the necessary quantities of fuel and the ability to deliver it in a hostile environment."
Same as in California.
The Houston-based oil services and construction company has been a lightening rod for Bush administration critics since former CEO Dick Cheney left Halliburton in 2000 to run for vice president. That connection has drawn even greater scrutiny over the past year after the U.S. government awarded Halliburton, without inviting other bidders, a contract to fight oil well fires and restore energy infrastructure in Iraq. Lesar said the company unfairly has become a political target and reiterated that Cheney has no financial interest in the company. He also emphasized the companyâs history of building airfields and other facilities for the military and the tough working conditions now endured by its employees in post-war Iraq.
Donât NGO employees like the UN get more money for hostile fire?
Lesar maintained that Halliburton is "one of only a few" companies that could perform the work needed in Iraq. He also noted the military logistical support contract, which extends activities beyond Iraq, is an extension of an earlier competitively bid contract. At that time, he said, the government asked Halliburton to develop contingency plans to restore Iraqâs oil industry. That led to a contract to implement the plan once the invasion of Iraq began. "Those who were fighting the war, and who now are trying to keep the peace, needed a support system right away," Lesar said. "A lengthy bid process simply wasnât feasible."
Many have said that the US planned poorly for the post-war period. Think of the disaster that could have happened if we had waited to bid the repair contract.
Posted by: Super Hose 2003-10-17