The Ministry of Finance has launched an improved e-procurement portal in order to fulfil its commitment of “transparency and ease of access to procurement opportunities required under the Public Procurement Act, 2021”, even as the government seeks to rewrite that legislation, having shirked the act since coming to office.
Government said the new platform allows for registered vendors to only receive notices for tenders they are eligible for; to search for opportunities across all government agencies and to “download and receive” access to all government procurement opportunities.
“The new platform, designed and built by procurement software company Bonfire, expands on the legacy procurement platform…,” the statement said.
“Unique to the new e-procurement platform is the ease in the ability of vendors to not only see the list of recipients of government procurement opportunities, but also to obtain details of the contract decision-making process.”
In opposition, the Progressive Liberal Party voted to pass the Public Procurement Bill, which governs the portal and its processes, in March 2021.
That act came into force on September 1, 2021 after the Minnis administration faced strong criticisms from the then-opposition and others over perceived foot dragging in implementing the new law, which provides for the establishment of a public procurement board, a digital procurement platform and an electronic vendor registry.
The government has already begun the process of rewriting that legislation.
The Ministry of Finance is providing a free informational session on October 3 at Margaritaville for the general public and potential vendors in regards to the e-procurement portal.
“Participants will have an opportunity to ask questions of the experts managing the government’s procurement site and experience the new platform,” the statement said.
“The event will also be streamed live on the Facebook pages of the Office of the Prime Minister and Ministry of Finance, to allow participation from persons not able to attend in person or who may be located in one of the Family Islands.”