- e-GP to save Rs.30 bn for Treasury p.a.
- Says SL on par with advanced economies
The Public Finance Department of the Finance Ministry yesterday announced the launch of electronic government procurement (e-GP) system, which is expected to save Rs.30 billion to the Treasury per annum while significantly improving the public financial management.
Finance Minister Mangala Samaraweera said with the launch of e-GP Sri Lanka is now on par with advanced economies like Singapore, European Union and Canada as Sri Lanka has successfully transformed its traditional manual procurement process into a modern system.
“Sri Lanka, being a States Party to the United Nations Convention against Corruption, has the international obligations to improve our public procurement processes,” Minister Samaraweera said.
“The Article 9 of the Corruption Convention refers to public procurement and management of public finances, whereby the State Parties are requested to take the necessary steps to establish appropriate systems of procurement, based on transparency, competition and objective criteria in decision-making, that are effective in preventing corruption,” he added.
Sri Lanka annually spends around a quarter of government expenditure on public procurement, which amounts to nearly 15 percent of the GDP.
Minister Samaraweera said considering the magnitude of that total annual expenditure, public procurement needs closer attention and scrutiny from all the stakeholders in the public management systems.
“Corruption, misappropriation and mismanagement of public assets must be tackled with a policy of zero tolerance, which from my point of view, remains difficult in our part of the world because of systemic weaknesses,” he said.
The minister pointed out that decisions on implementing many important projects are lagging behind because of the manual system that links to the decades’ old complicated government mechanism.
“I am convinced that this new e-GP system will save nearly Rs.30 billion to the Treasury, while improving the public financial management to a greater extent,” he said.