Views sought on public procurement nearly a decade after reforms

The impact of the legislation on the public procurement process is being investigated by Holyrood ministers.

Scottish Government: Views sought on public procurement nearly a decade after reforms iStock

Views are being sought on the public procurement process, nearly a decade on from reforms which were intended to boost wellbeing in local areas.

The Procurement Reform (Scotland) Act 2014 introduced a number of changes in the public sector procurement process, with a goal of making it easier for small companies to enter bids for contracts.

It also introduced a requirement of looking at the impact on the economic, social and environmental health of the area.

Holyrood’s Economy Committee now wants to investigate how far the legislation has met these aims.

A consultation will run until October 2.

Convener Claire Baker MSP said: “Public procurement is a huge driver of Scotland’s economy.

“Government figures suggest that procurement spending supports around £12.5bn of economic activity in Scotland and around 120,000 jobs.

“But we must make sure that that economic impact is being used to benefit our people, communities, and Scotland as a whole.

“That’s why the committee is taking this opportunity to scrutinise the legislation passed in 2014 to see if it is meeting its aims.”

She continued: “We want to know if sustainability is truly at the heart of procurement, and how public procurement can help support and develop local supply chains.

“This legislation has to strike a balance of providing maximum benefit to Scotland, while also widening access to bidding to include more of Scotland’s diverse business community.

“That includes small and medium enterprises, the third sector, and supported businesses.”

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