05 February,New Delhi
Finance Minister Arun Jaitley on Monday stressed on the importance of procedural fairness in public procurement and award of contracts.
Jaitley clarified that the same can be ensured through transparency and fairness.
Addressing the inaugural session of the 5th South Asia Region Public Procurement Conference here, Jaitley said enhanced transparency would enable a state to act in the best interest for its citizens in terms of price, quality and service delivery, which would help curb corruption in public procurement.
“The government has taken a number of steps to bring in greater transparency, fairness, and efficiency in public procurement through a series of measures including the launch of the Government e-Marketplace (GeM) for online purchases of common use items,” he added.
Jaitley further said in addition to having its own rules and regulations relating to public procurement, layers of accountability at various levels in the government have also been tightened.
“The evolution of public procurement in the last century has been rapid and its significance in the delivery of public services in democratic societies in the larger interest of the citizens. As South Asia is the fastest growing region, the relevance of public procurement is of key importance to all,” he said.
On a related note, the conference is being held to enable the heads of public procurement and other key stakeholders in the eight South Asian countries to meet and learn from one another and from experts in the field of public procurement.
The knowledge thus acquired would help various South Asian governments to consider enhancements and innovations in their public procurement systems, enabling efficient utilisation of public resources, ensuring quality and timeliness in delivery of services.