Vilnius Regional Court in Lithuania temporarily suspended the tender process for a contract to provide luggage scanning equipment to airports.
This comes after the Polish unit of the Chinese state-owned security inspection products company Nuctech requested suspension.
Court spokeswoman Lina Nemeikaite told Baltic News Service (BNS) that, upon the request of Nuctech Warsaw Company and Inta, Vilnius Regional Court stopped the procedure pending its decision on their lawsuit.
Lithuanian Airports (LOU) spokesman Tadas Vasiliauskas said that the court’s interim measure has stopped the state-owned firm from officially terminating the tender process.
BNS quoted Vasiliauskas as saying: “We’ll decide on the further course of the tender after the court’s ruling in the dispute.”
Meanwhile, the representative lawyer of Nuctech and Inta Vidas Vilkas said that the companies are urging the court to annul LOU’s decision not to sign the contract.
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Vilnius Regional Administrative Court has received another suit from the two firms challenging the Lithuanian Government’s decision that this deal would pose a threat to national security.
BNS quoted Vilkas as saying that the government’s decision would lead the order now going to a US-based competitor whose bid price was comparatively higher.
Last month, the Government of Lithuania stopped the subsidiary of Nuctech from delivering luggage scanning equipment for its airports on the grounds of national security.
A commission was formed by the government to examine the deal, but its conclusion was not made public.
National Security and Defence Parliamentary Committee chairman Laurynas Kasciunas said that the screening equipment can gather data related to passengers and luggage.
He added that, under Chinese law, the collected data could be provided to China’s intelligence and security services.
However, these allegations were dismissed by Nuctech.
The company stated that the equipment is produced in Poland “under the strictest applicable EU and national performance and safety standards”.