Telecom equipment manufacturers association TEMA in a letter to telecom secretary has raised concerns about Chinese firm ZTE and other foreign equipment suppliers circumventing clause of tender of state owned BSNL.
"One of the clause of the tender relating to bidders eligibility and qualification states that 'if any type product exists, the same shall be offered'. This clause put in by BSNL with the right intent is circumvented by the foreign bidders by ZTE etc.," TEMA said in the letter.
ZTE Corp has bagged a major chunk of massive contract from BSNL of supplying equipment for 10.15 million GSM line. For ZTE, the BSNL contract in India will bring in valuable business at a time when gear makers are facing scarcity of business and losses because new mobile phone companies are canceling contracts since their operating licences are no longer valid. Alcatel Lucent was also awarded the part of the BSNL contract.
While BSNL Chairman and Managing Director R K Upadhyay said "All tender norms will be strictly followed", ZTE refused to comment.
Alleging that the foreign vendors are offering imported products in place of those products which are available indigenously and already approved by BSNL, TEMA said these vendors are taking quotation from domestic vendors and using it to bring down prices of their foreign sub-vendors in the tender.
"We feel that this is not only a gross violation of such an important tender condition, but also an injustice to the indigenous manufacturers and also against national interest," TEMA said.