Pembroke Power Station dispute leaves local firms out of pocket

First published in County News

A continuing dispute between Pembroke Power Station contractors means local companies have been left substantially out of pocket, South Pembrokeshire MP Simon Hart told Parliament last week.

Mr Hart stepped in to try to resolve the problem between main contractor Alstom and and Italian subcontractor, SOMI Impianti last September after discovering SOMI owed county companies “substantial amounts of money”.

He has now asked Welsh Secretary Cheryl Gillan to put pressure on the companies involved, including RWE npower, to resolve their differences.

Mrs Gillan agreed to meet Mr Hart to see what can be done.

“I am keen to urge RWE npower to host a meeting with the affected subcontractors and for us to explore ways in which they could possibly help these companies’ attempts to recover their money from SOMI through the courts,” said Mr Hart. “The contractual dispute between Alstom and SOMI resulted in SOMI leaving the site and several subcontractors being owed many thousands of pounds.

“There is no dispute that these companies have completed the work for which they had been contracted but the problem is that the contract is with SOMI, and the main contractors and RWE npower are simply saying that it is not their problem and that the companies affected should pursue SOMI in the usual way.

“However, these are small companies who have neither the resources nor the time to pursue a large company based in Italy over a prolonged period of time.

“RWE is a good company and a welcome addition to our area.

What I hope they will recognise is that the power station would not have been built without Pembrokeshire companies who are now left high and dry.

“We all understand the legal position, but our request is that RWE accept a moral obligation too, and play their part in helping resolve the problem,” he added.

An Alstom spokesman said: “The issue of non-payment of workers on the Pembroke project is a contractual issue between SOMI Impianti and its subcontractors.

“Alstom has strongly urged SOMI to resolve this regrettable situation.”

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