Malaysian contractor claims firing of its JV midway through scheme is breach of contract by the client

The Malaysian contractor dumped from a prestige racecourse scheme by its Dubai client has said the developer breached its contract.

In a statement to the Kuala Lumpur stock exchange, WCT Engineering said it was axed by Meydan on Christmas Day - receiving the notification four days later. The firm is carrying out the $1.3bn (£890m) scheme in a joint venture with local firm Arabtec.

The contractor added that it had been given a 14-day cancellation notice, which is due to run out tomorrow. It added that it “strongly disputed” the reasons Meydan had given it for axing the JV and said: “Concerted efforts have been made by the directors and the JV since receiving the notice to meet with the employer with regards to the cancellation.”

Meydan had previously said it had acted because of “non-adherence to the agreed time schedule for construction”.

But WCT said the decision was a breach of contract and warned Meydan it was prepared for a fight. It said: “The company, through the JV, is currently considering all its options and will take the necessary steps to protect the group's interests.”

WCT and Arabtec are around 55% of the way through the scheme's construction.

Meydan wants the course opened in time for the Dubai World Cup in 2010, the world's richest horse race, which last year carried a first prize of $6m (£4m).