Procurement Review

The Ministry of Finance and Economic Management has now completely undertaken a review of procurement in the Public Service, the review undertaken by two international experts in procurement have identified a number of recommendations to the Financial Secretary designed to improve the nations public procurement process.

The Ministry of Finance and Economic Management is seeking to get feedback on the report and has made it available on it’s website.  Feedback can be provided either through email or a letter.

The Ministry will also hold an open forum in late July to discuss the recommendations made in the report before finalising it’s approach to reforming the procurement system of the Cook Islands.

BACKGROUND

A Public Expenditure and Financial Assessment (PEFA) [1] of the Cook Islands public financial management system rated the procurement system lowly.

The PEFA noted that:
• there were weaknesses in the implementation of procurement procedures, as well as in the procedures themselves;
• the frequent award of non-competitive tenders whose justification often appears unclear;
• weaknesses in the procurement process, particularly the extent of competitive exemptions, which were likely to affect negatively the efficient implementation of spending programmes;
• no independent tender review process for handling procurement complaints by participants before contracts are awarded.

In it’s response to the report  the Government outlined the processes around improving public sector, this proposed:
• the establishment of a centralised database of approved public tenders and approved tender waivers;
• review of the Cook Islands Government Financial Policies and Procedures Manual (CIGFPPM) to improve tender procedures by incorporating good practice including the publication of successful tender awards in the local media as well as on the MFEM website for a specific timeframe;
• a process by which the Office of the Ombudsman will address all public complaints; and
• a review of the entire procurement system and formal procedures for complaints and dispute resolution will be explored further.

Feedback to the report can be provided by letter to the Financial Secretary (PO Box 120 Rarotonga) or through email to procurement@mfem.gov.ck

The report can be downloaded from here. 

Download Report: pdfCI_Government_Procurement_review_Report_-_Final_1.pdf250.73 KB