From The Standard (Jan 16): Defense delays ordnance bidding
A bids and awards committee of the Department of National Defense suspended the pre-bid conference for the purchase of P94 million worth of ammunition after army officials could not answer questions from participating bidders.
The BAC chairman, Assistant Defense Secretary Ernesto Boac, suspended the meet after members of an army technical working group in charge of the procurement of caliber 25mm and 105mm high explosive ammunition failed to answer questions about the project’s specifications.
Boac was irked by the inability of the army officials to answer questions about the project, particularly about the export license of the United States State Department for the fuses of the 105mm ordnance.
The DND official scolded the army TWG and ordered army officials to do their homework, especially the technical specifications of the contract, before presenting the procurement for public bidding.
Boac also asked the two bidders present—Expal System of Spain and US-based ATK Corp. —to put all their comments and clarifications in writing so that the committee could answer their questions properly.
ATK has been a long-time player in defense contracts while this is the first time Expal will be participating in the military’s modernization program. Expal is the leader in the ammunition and explosives sector in Spain.
Expal is among the first Spanish companies to express interest in the country’s modernization program after the Spanish government expressed its support to the Armed Forces of the Philippines and its willingness to provide equipment to boost the military’s capabilities.
Madrid had earlier said that it would be willing to give second-hand defense articles if requested by the Philippine government.
During Aquino’s visit to Spain in 2014, several Spanish companies have expressed interest in doing business in the Philippines in a variety of fields, including defense contracts.
Aquino also presented to Spanish officials the country’s “triple action plan” in resolving maritime disputes, particularly in the South China Sea. Under the plan, Manila wants claimant countries to avoid activities that would raise tensions. The plan calls for a binding code of conduct in the disputed areas.