20th of May 2021
Scanning the public procurement system
- Half of the economic operators identified at least one public procurement procedure that they cannot attend because of the restrictive qualification conditions or the far too restrictive technical criteria.
- The better the public procurement electronic system is known to users, the more transparent and clear it is perceived.
- Instead, the general perception is that there still are methods to "dodge" SICAP.
These are just a few conclusions of the Sociologic research report regarding the ”Perception of the business sector and civil society on the integrity of public procurement”, report published today by Transparency International Romania and the Institute for Public Policies.
During this research there were analysed the factors that can cause problems in the public procurement processes that are carried out in the electronic system, through SICAP/SEAP. For the data relevance, more than 900 people were interviewed, meaning economic operators (enterprises) with experience or potential to participate in public procurement processes (nationally representative sample), civil society representatives and journalists.
In general, the electronic public procurement system is perceived as unwieldy, difficult, crowded, lacking transparency, a system in which the procurement price is often problematic - by using the "lowest price" criteria, to the detriment of quality. Technical specifications and selection criteria that aim to fit specifically a certain company, as well as the unnecessary split of a procurement, just to make only direct procurements are three of the most common ways used to detour the public procurement electronic system, these being mentioned by all groups interviewed in the research.
Instead, the answers given to specific questions, on issues that are more related to the experience and expertise level of the user, show an important aspect: the better the public procurement electronic system is known to users, the more transparent and clear it is perceived. Over 50% of economic operators gave grades from 8 to 10 regarding the ease-of-use SICAP. At the same time, over 49% identified at least one public procurement procedure in which they could not participate because the information / requests made and the assignment criteria were far too specific, limiting.
Regarding the integrity level, over half of the journalists and over 70% of the economic operators and NGOs consider that integrity is assured in the public procurement carried out in the electronic system, bid rigging being the exception rather than the rule. However, the alarm signal remains, given that over 50% of those interviewed believe that there are methods to detour the electronic system.
The full report is also available on the website www.pactedeintegritate.ro. The document was elaborated within the project ”Integrity Pacts - Civil Control Mechanism for Safeguarding EU Funds” Phase 2.
For additional information, the contact person is Irina Lonean, Transparency International Romania, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org, mobile: 0744.367.079.
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