The Conference hosted by the Ministry of Finance of India and co‐sponsored by the World Bank, Asian Development Bank, and Islamic Development Bank. The heads of public procurement of South Asian countries, high‐level government officials responsible for public procurement policymaking; oversight agencies; and representatives from several Development Partners active in the South Asian Region are among the participants of the conference.
South Asia Regional Public Procurement Network (SARPPN) with the Asian Development Bank, the World Bank and Procurement iNET have launched the South Asia Procurement Innovation Awards 2017-18 in partnership with South Asia Regional Public Procurement Network (SARPPN), Asian Development Bank and Procurement iNET with the objective of enhancing learning and knowledge sharing from innovative approaches and systems adapted by Procurement entities across the region.
Promoted by all member countries of SARPPN, an overwhelming response of 87 case stories were received from government and public sector organizations, universities, research institutions, NGOs/CBOs etc. and assessed the submissions on the basis of the level of innovation, replicability, and sustainability. Those entries were on five focal themes, namely, Market interactions and contributions leading to innovative Procurement solutions, Use of ICT for Procurement Management and useful Management information, Performance-focused Procurement reforms and Capacity Development, Innovative Procurement and Contract Management solutions for challenging and fragile environments and Citizen Engagement in Procurement Management and oversight. Out of 87 case stories eight winning entries from Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Nepal, Pakistan, Maldives and Sri Lanka were felicitated during the technical sessions of the South Asia Procurement Conference held in New Delhi from 5 – 8, 2018. This is the second consecutive year that the Country Case Story submitted by the Department of Public Finance of the Ministry of Finance has been awarded with the South Asia Procurement Innovation Award. Mr. P.Algama Director General of Department of Public Finance being the current Chair of the conference attended with Mr. E.A. Rathnaseela, Director of the Department of Public Finance to accept the award.
Innovative Case Story submitted under the focal theme of “Public Procurement and Service Delivery” by the Department of Public Finance of the Ministry of Finance which won the 1st Prize describes below;
Government of Sri Lanka has implemented a large number of infrastructure development projects during past decades. Some of the projects so implemented received critics from society and experienced scope change, delays, cost overruns and disputes. This situation resulted in incurring additional costs, prolongation of social and environmental impacts during construction, depriving the general public of the use of infrastructure facilities for years and also underutilization of local and foreign funds. Insufficient capacity in project management and contract management skills, including skills in contract and project administration, dispute resolution within Project Management Units have been identified as a key contributory factors. The absence of adequate comprehensive guide to project and contract management has become the main reason for this situation. Therefore, Ministry of Finance has intended to streamline project and contract management activities in order to minimize the implications on project implementation.
Organisations in both the public and private sectors are facing increasing pressure to reduce costs and improve financial and operational performance. New regulatory requirements, globalization of markets, increases in contract volumes and complexity of projects have resulted in an increasingly recognized the importance and benefits of effective contract and project management.
The growing recognition of the need to reengineer and improve contractual processes and satisfy increasing compliance, analytical and better outcome needs has also led to the adoption of more formal and structured project/contract management procedures and increase in search for guides that clearly explain procedures, guidelines and standard formats comprehensively designed to address these needs.
Hence, the introduction of the “Guide to Project Management and Contract Management” (GPMCM) with the technical assistance of Asian Development Bank (ADB) is timely response to a long felt need. The draft GPMCM was presented to various professional organizations and groups representing the construction industry and related government agencies including Construction Industry Development Authority (CIDA) and their observations and suggestions for improvements have been incorporated into the preparation of the Guide. Several workshops were conducted to invite the comments and suggestions from various stakeholder organizations and also to make them aware of importance and practicality of this guide.
This GPMCM is put into practice with effect from February, 2017 under the directives of Secretary to the Treasury. This GPMCM is currently available in the website of the Ministry of Finance. This Guide, templates and forms are e-fillable and can be downloadable free from the Ministry of Finance website.