European Pilot Academy loses AFM pilot-training tender appeal

The army’s decision to select one flying school to train its pilots over another was regular and within its rights, the court observed

(File Photo)
(File Photo)

The European Pilot Academy has lost an appeal in a case it had filed claiming that it was treated unfairly during a tendering process to train Armed Forces of Malta (AFM) pilots.

Earlier this year, the AFM was granted permission by the Director of Contracts to start negotiating with the Malta School of Flying and the European Pilot Academy (EPA) to train AFM pilots.

In May, it chose to continue its negotiations with the Malta School of Flying since its offer was cheaper, the court heard.

The European Pilot Academy was had been informed about the decision, however it appealed, saying that “the whole procedure is null and void”.

It argued that it had not been provided with any details regarding a right to appeal the decision, insisting that no formal negotiations had taken place.  

“Correspondence between the contracting authority and the bidders is a form of negotiation,” the court said in its judgment.  “After reviewing the offers, the authority found that there was a substantial difference in price between one offer and the other and that is why the bidder with the cheapest offer was preferred.”

It added that this did not amount to the AFM being unfair or preferential in its judgment.

The European Pilot Academy was ordered to pay all court expenses.

Giannino Caruana Demajo and Noel Cuschieri were presiding judges. 

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