Turn Back Agreement

Following the principles of enlightened personal interest, officials like Dean Acheson, John Foster Dulles, George F. Kennan, and George Marshall understood that in the age of totalitarianism, jet planes, and the atomic bomb, it was foolish to believe that the United States could retreat into its shell. Only by ventured with the world, they believed, can Washington design agreements, institutions, and events in a way that benefits America. For all its mistakes, the global system they created served this country and other Western nations well. (Its impact on many non-Western nations was less welcome.) If Donald Trump withdraws the United States from the Paris agreement on climate change, which enjoys the support of one hundred and fifty-five countries, it would be the most blatant confirmation to date of his intention to undermine the POST-WAR SYSTEM LED BY THE UNITED STATES and to return to the isolationism and distrust of foreign entanglements that characterized American politics before accepting the mantle of a superpower. In response to industry demand, FIDIC is currently preparing a subcontract for the construction of construction and engineering work, designed by the employer and intended to be used for subcontracting to be used with the FIDIC 1999 Red1 and Pink2 books. In November 2009, FIDIC released a trial version of the subcontract for comment. The trial edition is largely well worded, but some of the dissemination provisions could be slightly revised in the final version that will be published for use this year. The dispute resolution clauses in the test edition attempt to address the three issues mentioned above, but unfortunately they are somewhat deficient and present considerable risks for both the main contractor and the subcontractor. Again, it is to be hoped that these issues will be resolved in the final version.

For a more detailed commentary on the FIDIC test subcontract, click here. There is no one-stop solution for the various possible pitfalls associated with back-to-back contracts. Regardless of the approach taken to the design of back-to-back contracts, the decision should never be based on the intention to shorten a necessarily rigorous design process. Principal contractors and subcontractors have a legitimate interest in ensuring that the subcontracting is properly prepared. In addition, in the case of subcontracting, the main contractor must ensure that its main contractual obligations are properly distributed among the various subcontractors and that they do not untnowingly refrain.. . . .

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