Public projects fail to attract bids as Turkey’s inflation soars

Tenders put out by Turkey’s ministries and public bodies have failed to attract bids in the last three months, daily BirGün reported on Sunday.

The Health Ministry ended tenders for 102 construction, renovation and repair projects without any interested companies, while another 24 tenders were cancelled after budgetary issues.

Construction for 45 schools also failed to start due to no bids coming in. Twelve school projects were revoked due to a lack of budget with various governorates, BirGün said. Several tenders for earthquake reinforcements for school buildings have also been cancelled over budget issues.

Turkey’s social housing company TOKİ cancelled 31 projects, and Highways Directorate cancelled construction projects for 18 roads in total in the same time frame.

The Youth and Sports Ministry saw 76 tenders attract no bids, for projects including dormitories, stadiums and youth centres. Many existing dormitories were unable to be repaired due to no bids.

Chamber of Civil Engineers Chairman Taner Yüzgeç told BirGün that companies were not bidding on public projects because of the uncertainty in Turkey’s economy.

“The Urbanisation Ministry determines purchase prices for building materials ahead of time, and tenders are based on them,” Yüzgeç said. “They had to be revised twice this year because reality does not match these announced prices.”

Contractors cannot foresee the future, and companies avoid public tenders as limited budgets have resulted in late payments, he added.

Turkey’s official consumer price inflation rate rose to 80.2 percent in August, continuing the upward trend after the central bank cut benchmark interest rates to 13 percent from 14 percent on the government’s orders. Meanwhile, ENAG, an independent group of academics, announced their calculations made using “virtually the same methods” as the statistics institute TÜİK returned an inflation figure of 181.4 percent for August.

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