Contractors will now be able to process tender applications faster and easily, thanks to a new policy that seeks to enhance efficiency and reduce delays in the procurement of goods and services for projects funded by the African Development Bank (AfDB), officials have said.
The Procurement Policy for the Bank Group-Funded Operations seeks to enhance procurement systems of member countries and ensure that they achieve value-for-money “based on mutually-supporting principles of economy, efficiency and equity”.
According to the guidelines, this can be achieved by using processes and procedures that are competitive, fair and transparent.
The new procurement policy was recently discussed at the Bank Procurement Assessment Report validation workshop, conducted by AfDB and the Rwanda Public Procurement Authority (RPPA). The policy was approved in 2015 by AfDB board of directors.
Speaking during the workshop, Augustus Seminega (pictured right), the RPPA director general, said the findings will help government and the procurement body to address the gaps identified by the study.
“Procurement procedures for goods and services have been made fast and efficient. This means that stakeholders will now take less time to procure goods and services, a development that will also support service delivery.”
He was optimistic that the guidelines will address some of the challenges that procurement entities have been experiencing, such as delays in awarding tenders, execution of contracts and, shoddy work.
The consultation meeting sought to validate the report findings.
It was attended by stakeholders from public sector, development partners, the National Council for Construction and private sector players, as well as non-governmental organisations.
Seminega said public procurement has been improved by implementation of electronic procurement.
The RPPA chief noted that e-procurement is efficient, secure and ensures transparency in the process, leaving no room for manipulation of information or bid applications.
Frank Mvula, the AfDB procurement division manager and one of the experts that conducted the study, said Rwanda’s procurement system meets global principles of equity, transparency and integrity.
The results of the assessment will further support implementation of Rwanda’s Country Strategy Paper objectives for the period 2017-2021. The strategy aims at accelerating the economic transformation process, thereby boosting inclusive private sector-led growth and creating higher value-added formal wage employment.
More about the policy
Before approving the policy, AfDB consulted with donors to ensure effective and efficient coordination of technical and financial assistance. The report was also reviewed and shared with the government and other stakeholders.
The policy takes into consideration new factors such as the increasing role of procurement in public expenditure management, projects undertaken as public-private partnerships, the growing interest of governments in ensuring value-for-money in procurement and the growing use of procurement by governments to support socio-economic objectives.
“The report identifies main issues with a negative impact on the use of borrower procurement system in AfDB-funded operations, relating to the registration of bidders and the involvement of the Rwanda Public Procurement Authority in procurement transactions,” Mvula explained.