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6 July 2014 | Will Green
The African Development Bank’s (AfDB) new procurement policy aims to develop public purchasing in member countries.
In a policy framework paper the AfDB said the changes would encourage “use of country systems” and entail “a sharper focus on enhancing development effectiveness and building regional member countries’ (RMCs) institutions”.
The report said: “At the country level, the bank’s support will vary from advisory to more hands-on interactions. Capacity-building initiatives will include professionalisation of the procurement function, with comprehensive action plans for addressing gaps to build sustainable institutions and uphold the integrity of systems.”
The framework paper, which follows an approach paper published in March, said the policy would include tailoring its application to suit different countries’ capacities, adapting to the specific requirements of individual projects, incorporating new concepts and approaches, and increasing cost effectiveness.
“While the current procurement policy has generally served the bank and the RMCs well in issues of fiduciary compliance, it is being increasingly seen by partner countries as lacking sufficient flexibility and dynamism to address their varied and evolving development needs,” said the report.
“Effectiveness is truly developmental in nature only if it is supported by efforts to strengthen country institutions, systems and legal frameworks by building upon and improving these through increased use and application. Modernising the bank’s procurement policy, therefore, entails a sharper focus on enhancing development effectiveness and building RMCs’ institutions through the bank’s wide range of instruments while ensuring fiduciary compliance.”
The new policy is expected to be presented to various committees of the AfDB in early October.