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AO mandates all gov't agencies to use e-procurement system

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President Benigno S. Aquino III has issued an administrative order mandating all government agencies to use the Philippine Government Electronic Procurement System (PhilGEPS) in all their procurement activities, including the publication of all bid opportunities, notices, awards and contracts, in accordance with the country’s procurement laws.

By virtue of Administrative Order (AO) No. 17, signed by the President on July 28, government offices are directed to source all their common-use supplies directly from the Procurement Service (PS) of the Department of Budget and Management (DBM) or from its regional depots throughout the country, Executive Secretary Paquito N. Ochoa Jr. said on Monday.

“This administration reiterates the policy that procurement of government supplies, materials, and equipment shall be done in the most  transparent and competitive manner” Ochoa said.

Ensuring transparency and competition, Ochoa stressed, are keys to protecting the procurement system from graft, as these two elements discourage attempts to rig the bidding and awarding process to favour particular suppliers.

Common-use supplies refer to office supplies like bond paper, ballpens, pencils, and ink, which eat up about P19.5 billion of the government’s annual spending package.

“With a centralized supply purchasing system, the budget department has estimated that the government stands to save as much as P6 billion a year,” Ochoa said.

According to Ochoa, PhilGEPS, which can be accessed online at www.philgeps.net, provides relevant information on all procurement activities, and will help accelerate and further facilitate the entire procurement process in all government agencies. At present, the system already has 53,382 registered suppliers.

The AO applies to all national government agencies, including military and police Units; government-owned and -controlled corporations (GOCCs); government financial institutions (GFIs); state universities and colleges (SUCs); and local government units (LGUs), Ochoa said.

In the past, only the national government agencies, including SUCs, GOCCs and their subsidiaries, were mandated to use the PS system. However, upon the enactment of RA 9184, LGUs are now required to use PS or PhilGEPS.

The presidential issuance also calls for a periodic evaluation of all procuring entities, and this includes the regular holding of procurement training programs and distribution of procurement operations manual for all offices and agencies of the government. (PCOO/PIA9-BST)




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