11 March 2008 | Jake Kanter
The Scottish government has launched a new organisation to establish deals and buy goods and services for the country's public sector.
Procurement Scotland, the first organisation of its kind, will develop national strategies to buy a range of items including IT equipment, energy, stationery and professional services. Buyers from across the public sector can then choose to sign up to these deals.
The group has already conducted an online auction that saved £1.2 million on IT equipment. It hopes to make further savings through online auctions, building relationships with suppliers and ensuring smaller suppliers can bid for public tenders.
It will also collaborate with the government's other procurement initiatives, the Advanced Procurement for Universities and Colleges and the Central Government Centre of Procurement Expertise, to cut costs.
John Swinney, cabinet secretary for finance said he wanted the public sector to buy responsibly and use its resources effectively. "The government is keen to maximise the involvement of a broad range of businesses in the procurement process and this approach will help us achieve that aim," he said.