Wto Global Procurement Agreement
Achieving “value for money” is a priority for most procurement systems. But how? Open, transparent and non-discriminatory purchases are generally seen as the best way to achieve this goal, as they optimize competition between suppliers. At the same time, there are competing policy objectives: many governments also use public procurement to achieve other domestic policy objectives, such as promoting certain local industrial sectors or social groups. The agreement contains a number of detailed procedural obligations that the awarding entities must fulfil in order to ensure the effective application of their basic principles (Articles VII to XVI). In many respects, these provisions codify recognized good procurement practices, which aim at efficiency and cost-effectiveness. Under the GPA, they are also used to ensure open access to covered markets and to ensure that domestic and foreign deliveries and suppliers compete for public procurement. The GPA is a multi-lateral agreement, which means that it only engages WTO members who are parties and have therefore agreed to be linked to it. It currently has 20 parties, with 48 WTO members. These include five new contracting parties whose memberships became effective after the revised GPA came into force. Prior to the actual tendering process, contracting parties are required to publish a tender in the form of a tender in a public publication in Schedule II of the agreement.
The purpose of this measure is to inform all interested suppliers of the purchasing opportunities and relevant aspects of the relevant markets. Schedule 1 headquarters entities are required to use a proposed contract notice, while other Schedule 2 and 3 entities may, under certain conditions, use a contract notice or certification system to meet the requirements of the auction notice (Article IX:3, 7, 9). The MPA does not automatically apply to all public procurement of contracting parties. On the contrary, it applies only to purchases of goods, services or a combination of them, as defined in the lists of the parties to the agreement (i.e. the annexes to Schedule I). The GPA establishes a common framework of rights and obligations between its contracting parties with respect to their national public procurement laws, regulations, procedures and practices. Preferential treatment of domestic goods, services and suppliers discriminates against foreign suppliers and therefore acts as a barrier to trade in this sector. These obstacles are not removed by wto multilateral rules, as public procurement is expressly excluded from the main disciplines of the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT, Article III: 8 bis) and the General Agreement on Trade in Services (GATS see Article XIII:1).