The firm, which designed the Scottish Parliament building, has been hit in recent months by the departure of 80 staff from its Hong Kong office, as well as senior personnel from its US operations, amid reports of unrest over late payment of salaries. — The Construction Index
RMJM, Robert Matthew Johnson Marshall, of Edinburgh, Scotland has found itself in a precarious situation. According to the Scotsman, the firm is in a bit of a pickle with late payments of salaries at its Hong Kong office. Despite the firm receiving a £5,000,000 cash and a £3,000,000 loan bailout from its owner, the Morrison family, it has had trouble collecting on debts from its clients and maintaining cash flow.
With all the attention on RMJM's financial woes, it may have had drawn some unwanted attention to aspects of RMJM's projects. Namely, the project New Providence Island in Nassau, Bahamas-- a $3,400,000,000 mega-resort-- has questionable Chinese involvement. Architectural Record reports that, "In 2009, China State Construction Engineering Corp. agreed to buy a small stake in the resort. China State then hired its subsidiary, China Construction America Inc. (CCA), to serve as the general contractor and construction manager." In addition to the Chinese firm hiring a Chinese contractor, "China State has requested permits for 8,150 foreign workers, presumably mostly Chinese, constituting 71% of the total workforce of 11,500."
A commenter on Architectural Record had this to say, "As a Caribbean architect I am disheartened that there seems to be no faith in the regional professionals. All the pearl jobs seems to go in one direction and the same pool. I know that the developer's prime interest is the best return on their investment. Ultimately though, the developed and developing countries interest is best served, if a way could be found to share the wealth."