24 hours before the
launch of a major campaign against AMEC’s participation in the controversial
Yusufeli Dam in Turkey , the company has announced its withdrawal .
Hannah Griffiths, Corporates Campaigner at Friends of the Earth said: “We are
delighted with the news that UK construction company has pulled out of this
controversial dam in Turkey. Corporations planning to help construct large dam
projects must make themselves more transparent and accountable. They must adopt
the international guidelines of the World Commission on Dams and make their
environmental impact assessments open to public scrutiny."
“AMEC's withdrawal now casts doubt over the future of this project. We now call
on all members of the consortium to reconsider this project, including SPIE
Batignolles TP, of which AMEC is a substantial shareholder."
Nick Hildyard, Director of the Ilisu Dam Campaign said: “This is superb news -
we congratulate AMEC and ask them to folllow up by encouraging Spie to withdraw
too. But once more the UK government has been let off the hook from setting
robust social and environmental criteria before giving credit guarantee for
developments.” “We hope that the ECGD will take steps to ensure that its
reputation is not further damaged by having to consider controversial projects
such as these. The UK government must also put the ECGD on a firm ethical
footing and ensure that UK taxpayers money does not contribute to projects that
cause enormous environmental and social damage."
Kerim Yildiz, Director of the Human Rights Project said: “We are delighted that
AMEC has withdrawn from this project. For minorities on the ground whose homes
livelihood and ways of life are threatened by this project this is a huge
 If built, the Yusufeli Dam would flood 18 towns and villages and precious
archeological sites such as churches, fortresses and a citadel. Currently
undisturbed habitat - home to endangered species such as the red vulture and
brown bear - will also be lost. The project would drown the homes of15,000
people and displace a further 15,000. Reports from the region suggest that
affected communities have not been properly consulted and that adequate plans
for resettlement have not been drawn up.
 AMEC had applied to the UK Government for £68 million of public funds to
underwrite the project. The Export Credits Guarantee Department (ECGD) is
currently considering this application. The international construction
consortium also involves French company Spie. AMEC owns 46% of Spie, and has an
option to buy the remainder this year.