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27 October 2010 | Angeline Albert in Glasgow
The scope of procurement reform must be extended,
Scotland’s deputy first minister
told buyers at the purchasing exhibition Procurex Scotland yesterday.
Deputy first minister Nicola Sturgeon said procurement
was essential to meet Scotland’s
Chancellor George Osborne’s spending review revealed that
budget will be cut by £1.3 billion
in cash terms in 2011-12 compared to 2010-11 - including a fall of £800 million in the capital budget.
“No matter how far we
have come we also all recognise that in the current climate there is still more
work to do. All public sector bodies need to continue to improve their
procurement practices. The value that procurement professionals can add to that
process should be recognised.
“There have been some
real success stories but there are some significant gaps. Procurement hasn’t yet begun to tackle
construction and there are potential huge savings to be made there. During the
downturn tender prices dropped by 15-20 per cent and that offers savings for
Next year capital budgets will fall by a quarter,
Sturgeon said, and public sector procurement needed to find new and creative
ways to drive down costs.
She was speaking on
the day of the launch of a new “procurement
journey” guide booklet aimed at helping
public sector staff take the right procurement steps, from preparing a brief to
contract management stage.
Savings of £327 million were achieved in Scotland
through better procurement in 2008-09.
John Swinney, cabinet secretary for finance and sustainable growth, will
outline Scotland’s four-year budget plan in the next few weeks.