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Relyant Gets U.S. Contract to Clean Up Old Battlefields

Afghanistan has been a scene of combat since the Soviet invasion in Christmas, 1980. The Russians left and the government they left behind was overthrown by the Taliban. That group fought different opponents until Winter of 2001 when the U.S. and its Northern Alliance allies through them out. This means that the country is littered with old ordnance, weapons and equipment. Tennessee company Relyant has now been given a contract by the U.S. Army to help clean up these old weapons in Afghanistan.

The contract is worth about $49 million and has one base year and two option years. Relyant already provides support services to the U.S. military in Afghanistan including construction, transportation and security. The company has expanded quite a bit since its formation in 2006 and operates in the U.S. as well as Africa and Asia.

The company will actively demine areas of Afghanistan. They will primarily be looking for old ordnance from the Soviet fighting.

Despite the shift in focus with the Obama Administration and the current Congress from using contractors they will be necessary to provide services to deployed military. The U.S. Armed Forces are not large enough to do everything and contracts like this will still need to be issued. It may be that smaller companies such as Relyant may have an advantage in winning these contract as the larger suppliers such as Halliburton and Dyncorp have been tainted rightly-or-wrongly by past events and contracts.

Photo from The National Guard flickr photostream.

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Air Force Now Slips RFP Award Date to November

Earlier this year in responding to questions about the delay to the submissions of proposals to July due to the accommodation for EADS (EADS:P) the Air Force said the contract will start in mid-November. Now word is coming out that the award won’t be made until “late November”. Critics have seized on this changes as a delay due to the decision to allow EADS to bid.

Technically this is a delay of several weeks from the original schedule. The chances though of the Air Force meeting that were low as it was very aggressive. It only gave them four months to review proposals and conduct the award. Even if they assumed the new proposals were similar to the last ones in 2008 that amount of time to conduct a source selection for a contract of this size may have been a little unrealistic.

This decision will spur EADS’ opponents and Boeing (BA) supporters to further their current war of words.

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