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COMESA injects Sh603m to boost procurement

NAIROBI, July 23 – The Common Market for East and Southern Africa (COMESA) Secretariat is undertaking a Sh603 million project to support some of its member states in enhancing the capacity of their technical experts in the implementation of modern public procurement systems.

COMESA Assistant Secretary General for Programs Stephen Karangizi told reporters Wednesday that this would enable all the 19 member countries to put in place modern procurement laws by 2011.

The legislation would be in line with the regional body\’s vision of having harmonised electronic procurement systems that comply with the COMESA directive and other international best practice models.

It is estimated that between 60 and 70 percent of national budgets is used in public procurement.

This area therefore requires appropriate attention because it involves significant resources that, if poorly managed, could undermine socio-economic programs and poverty reduction efforts.

It will also reduce corruption in procurement processes.

Karangizi spoke during a meeting of the COMESA Committee of Procurement Experts, which is charged with reviewing the necessary legislative reforms.

The team is also responsible for drafting procurement regulations that would put into motion a regional public procurement market.

With the support of the African Development Bank (AfDB) Group, the trading bloc launched the Enhancing Procurement Reforms and Capacity Project (EPRCP), aiming to consolidate the changes and further enhance COMESA\’s regional integration efforts.

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"The project supports the legislative development at national level and provides technical assistance in the implementation of these systems," Karangizi stressed.

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