On March 3, 2021, the World Bank Group announced the three-and-a-half-year debarment of Grupo Mecánica del Vuelo Sistemas, SAU, a Spanish engineering company, for engaging in collusive, corrupt, and fraudulent practices in connection with the tendering process of two urban development projects in Vietnam (the Danang Sustainable City Development Project and the Hanoi Urban Transport Development Project). According to the World Bank, now-former members of Grupo Mecánica management (i) colluded with two design consultants to gain unfair competitive advantages in the tendering process; (ii) agreed to pay a commission to an agent in exchange for the agent agreeing to improperly influence the tendering process; and (iii) failed to disclose that it was involved in drafting the tender documents for the two projects. During its debarment period, Grupo Mecánica is ineligible to participate in World Bank projects and is subject to cross-debarment by other multilateral development banks.
Grupo Mecánica received a “significantly reduced” period of debarment due to its cooperation, remediation, and agreement to voluntarily withdraw from projects during the pendency of the World Bank’s audit. The Company agreed, as a condition of its release from debarment, to continue cooperating with the World Bank and to develop an integrity compliance program consistent with World Bank Integrity Compliance Guidelines.