Costa Rica’s Route 27 expansion has been hit by allegations of over 600 contract breaches by the concessionaire in charge. With many calling for an end to this agreement, there’s a growing desire for a new company to assume control. However, this contract remains valid for another decade.
The Cost of Premature Contract Termination
While it may seem tempting to break ties with the current company, the repercussions could be substantial for Costa Rica. Premature termination of the contract could incur a staggering $350 million expense. Thus, a more strategic approach may involve highlighting each contractual violation and pursuing legal action to impose fines.
The Consequences and Course of Action for Contract Breaches
The existing contract contains a detailed clause stipulating the fines for every breach, offering a potential way forward. The Costa Rican Government has set a target of recouping $60 million in fines from the concessionaire, given the extensive list of infractions committed.
Enforcing Compliance: The Role of the National Concessions Council
The National Concessions Council is taking proactive steps to hold the concessionaire accountable. It has documented over 600 instances of alleged non-compliance, dating from 2015 to the present, which are now being filed for punitive action.
The Array of Contract Breaches
The violations vary from neglecting landslide incidents and ignoring potholes, to asphalt defects and material detachment issues. Additionally, late report submissions, bridge gaps, inadequate traffic signals, and traffic interruptions due to poor road maintenance further underscore the pressing need to address these breaches effectively.
As Costa Rica grapples with the challenges posed by the alleged contract breaches in the Route 27 expansion, the nation must weigh the potential costs and benefits of its options. Whether it’s pursuing legal fines or considering a new concessionaire, it’s clear that urgent steps must be taken to ensure the integrity and safety of this crucial infrastructure project.