The Concept of Public Procurement

What is Public Procurement?

Public procurement is the process by which public entities contract for acquisition or supply of goods, services or works. Public procurement has undergone major reforms in which the major concerns were those of improving efficiency and effectiveness, promoting competition, trying to alleviate corruption levels in procurement activities, enhancing standardized procedures among others. This has further been supported especially by the regulatory bodies of; Public procurement and Oversight Authority, Public Procurement Advisory board, and Public Procurement Administrative board.

Government procurement is also the subject of the Agreement on Government Procurement, a plurilateral international treaty under the auspices of the WTO.

Government procurement in the European Union

Government procurement in the European Union is the awarding of contracts for public works and for the purchase of goods and services by the public authorities of the European Union (EU) and its member states. Government procurement represents 13.5% of EU GDP as of 2007, and has been the subject of increasing European regulation since the 1970s because of its importance in the European single market

The Scope of Public Procurement

The scope of public procurement is broad and encompasses a wide range of activities and sectors. Here are some key aspects of its scope:

  1. Goods: Public procurement covers the purchase of physical products, such as office supplies, vehicles, machinery, and equipment needed for government operations.
  2. Services: It includes the acquisition of various services, such as consulting, legal, accounting, maintenance, transportation, and healthcare services.
  3. Works: This involves contracting for construction projects, infrastructure development, and other physical structures or facilities needed by the government.
  4. Technology and Software: Procurement of software, hardware, IT services, and other technology-related products is also within the scope of public procurement, as governments increasingly rely on technology to deliver services efficiently.
  5. Consulting and Professional Services: Governments often need to engage consultants, architects, engineers, and other professionals to provide expertise in various projects and initiatives.
  6. Regulatory Compliance: Procurement processes must adhere to various regulations and policies, ensuring transparency, fairness, competition, and accountability in the use of public funds.
  7. Sustainability and Social Responsibility: There is a growing emphasis on incorporating sustainability criteria and social responsibility considerations into public procurement practices, such as environmentally friendly products, fair labor practices, and supporting local businesses.
  8. International Procurement: In some cases, public procurement extends beyond national borders, involving the purchase of goods or services from international suppliers.
  9. Public-Private Partnerships (PPPs): Public procurement can also involve collaboration between the public and private sectors through PPPs, where private companies participate in the financing, construction, operation, and maintenance of public infrastructure or services.
  10. Research and Innovation: Governments may procure research and development services or innovative solutions to address specific challenges or advance technology in various sectors.

Overall, the scope of public procurement is vast and plays a crucial role in the functioning of governments, the delivery of public services, and the development of infrastructure and economies.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *