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When public procurement reform is needed in Turkey and Egypt



In order to ensure openness, fairness and transparency of competitive conditions in public procurement, 47 member countries of the World Trade Organization apply the Plurilateral Agreement on Government Procurement (GPA) and ten countries (*) have initiated the accession process. The latest Femise research project surprisingly finds that neither Egypt nor Turkey are involved in this process. However, the study FEM42-02 shows that they would both have much to gain in terms of controling public funds and improving competitiveness.



The latest Femise research project surprisingly finds that neither Egypt nor Turkey are involved in public procurement reform. ©N.B.C
The latest Femise research project surprisingly finds that neither Egypt nor Turkey are involved in public procurement reform. ©N.B.C
Transparency, non-discrimination, integrity and competition are the four pillars of a sound public procurement system. For the supply of a given service, the State and the communities commit the taxpayer's money. They must retain the best value for money by excluding any collusion in favor of a friend, a family member, a political party or a business relationship. The control of public money is all the more important as the country invests in the development of its infrastructure, and therefore multiplies public procurements.
Tendering is a real opportunity for suppliers as long as equal treatment is guaranteed by the procedure. While 47 WTO member countries, signatories to the plurilateral Agreement on Government Procurement (GPA), are fully aware of these issues, Egypt and Turkey are still left out of this process.

An untapped approach by both countries

EU Member States launched more than three million tenders within the european economic space and Macedonia between 2006 and 2015. ©N.B.C
EU Member States launched more than three million tenders within the european economic space and Macedonia between 2006 and 2015. ©N.B.C
The expected benefits for these two countries in becoming signatories to the GPA would be enormous. This agreement would allow both countries to move towards increased competition and to improve governance. For firms, it would be a real opportunity to win new business deals by opening the doors to a large market. For example, EU Member States launched more than three million tenders within the european economic space and Macedonia between 2006 and 2015. In a document entitled " Turkey’s and Egypt’s possible Accessions to the WTO Government Procurement Agreement : What are the Pros and Cons ? ", Femise researchers are surprised that these two countries are not yet engaged in this process.
Prior to 2002, Turkey did not respect the principles of public procurement. In 2002, the country adopted a law taking into account the European directives in effect (...). But, instead of getting closer to European legislation, Turkey has chosen to deviate more and more from the « acquis communautaire » over time, regrets the study.
As a result, the Turkish public procurement system in 2017 needs a major reform. Membership of the WTO GPA would allow reform of public procurement mechanisms while providing major benefits to Turkey.

Lack of a national public procurement policy in Egypt

In this area, Egypt is characterized by a pure and simple absence of national policy on public procurement. As no standard document has been drawn-up for the calls for tenders, each government agency publishes its own documents generating opacity regarding their functionning. Egypt also claims discrimination regarding access to government procurement. Thus, bidders must reside in Egypt or be associated with a local agent. In addition, if the amount of the tender is below 400 000 Egyptian pounds (20 000 €), only local companies can bid. In the construction sector, the prime contractor must be an Egyptian company, foreign firms are only allowed to contract for subcontracting. The Femise study nonetheless states that preference for local suppliers can be set out in the terms of accession to the WTO GPA.
 
Click here to read the Femise Report FEM42-02
 
 
(*): Albania, Australia, China, Georgia, Jordan, Oman, Kyrgyz Republic, Russian Federation, Tajikistan, The former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia. Five other members have made a commitment in their accession protocol to the WTO to launch the process of accession to the GPA. These are Afghanistan, Saudi Arabia, Kazakhstan, Mongolia and Seychelles.
 

Nathalie Bureau du Colombier, MARSEILLE


Monday, November 13th 2017



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