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DBM, World Bank plan procurement reforms

The Department of Budget and Management (DBM) and the World Bank are planning to initiate and implement reforms in the Philippines’ procurement law.

In a statement Friday, Oct. 14, the DBM said that Budget Secretary Amenah F. Pangandaman met with officials from the World Bank in Washington D.C. to discuss “prospective collaboration and partnership” in procurement reforms.

“The Government Procurement Reform Act (RA 9184) was passed in 2003. That is nearly two decades ago. The timing is therefore ripe to introduce further reforms and review the government procurement process,” Pangandaman said following the meeting.

Pangandaman also said this initiative is in line with her agenda of maximizing the use of digitalization to ensure transparency and generate savings on the public procurement process.

Pangandaman added that the DBM is “seriously advocating” the reforms to promote efficiency and sustainability in public procurement process, as well as to professionalize further the government’s procurement practitioners.

“This is, in fact, one of the top agenda I mentioned during my confirmation as DBM Secretary. We will endeavor to make this happen,” the budget chief said.

During the meeting, World Bank also expressed admiration and full support to the new leadership of Pangandaman, the DBM said.

Moreover, the World Bank committed to provide technical assistance to the DBM so it can efficiently study, plan, and implement reforms and amendments in the procurement law, the department said.

“We are encouraged by the Madame Secretary’s vision, energy and drive for continuing reforms in the area of procurement and budget management,” Ndiame Diop, World Bank Philippines country director said.

“The World Bank will be pleased to technically support them,” he added.

For her part, Pangandaman said “the DBM sincerely welcomes the efforts of the World Bank to support the Department’s goal for transformation. We are looking forward to engaging our World Bank partners, as we endeavor to work on these procurement reforms.”

According to the World Bank study, the national government can save at least 26 percent to 29 percent of its total procurement cost, should reforms in the procurement law be implemented.

Aside from the reforms in government procurement, also discussed during the meeting were other prospective areas for cooperation such as the National Government Rightsizing Program, cash-based budgeting system, Green Procurement, and the Budget Treasury Management System.





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