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20 June 2013 |Marino Donati
The Bangladesh government has secured $34.5 million (£22.1 million) funding from the World Bank's lending arm for its second public procurement reform project.
The money will be used to expand electronic procurement as well as online procurement performance monitoring in key public agencies. The credit comes from the bank’s International Development Association (IDA), which supplies funding and loans to the world’s poorest countries to boost economic growth.
Electronic procurement has been piloted in the four government agencies that account for more than half of total government procurement. These are the Roads and Highways Department, Local Government Engineering Department, Rural Electrification Board and Bangladesh Water Development Board. The additional financing will expand electronic procurement to 20 more agencies, covering health, education, power and public works.
Johannes Zutt, World Bank country director for Bangladesh and Nepal, said: “Electronic procurement makes public contracting more transparent, more secure and more competitive. It helps to reduce inappropriate bidding practices and ensures the efficient use of taxpayer resources to achieve the development aspirations of the Bangladeshi people.”
It is the second procurement project to be funded by the World Bank since 2002. The first project introduced measures to make the public procurement system compliant with international standards on efficiency, transparency and accountability by training and increasing the pool of national procurement professionals.
The loan from the IDA has 40 years to maturity, including a 10-year grace period, and carries a service charge of 0.75 per cent.