An Asian Development Bank (ADB) report has suggested using blockchain to create a global government e-procurement (e-GP) database.
The report, written for the ADB by a consultant, said the distributed ledger technology could be used to create a shared database of suppliers and authenticated work experience certificates to be used across countries.
This would reduce duplication across government supplier lists, increase interoperability of data and provide buyers with a real-time view of what contracts are outstanding with suppliers.
The technology could be used to create a single supplier database for governments with fragmented procurement systems, said the report. Only few countries have successfully implemented a single e-GP systems across all government purchasing agencies, it said, while some countries have more than 50 systems in place.
The report, Development of a global e-government procurement architecture using blockchain technology, also proposes giving banks access to the blockchain, enabling them to “seamlessly submit” electronic performance guarantees on behalf of suppliers from anywhere in the world. This would allow the system to work as a procure-to-pay system.
It said: “Many countries in America, Europe and Asia Pacific have adopted e-GP and countries in the African region are now getting on-boarded. The number of e-GP installations worldwide will be in the range of 200–250.
“It is just a question of time before close to 100% of the countries will have adopted e-GP and almost all the government procurement will happen online.
“The vision for the global e-GP architecture is to inter-link and correlate relevant data from all the e-GP systems primarily for the development of a de-duplicated global database of suppliers and an authenticated, global online repository of work experience certificates.”
The ADB has been developing a regional e-procurement system since 2013.
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