Increasing pressure from civil society and international financing organisations to demonstrate transparency and value for money has prompted governments worldwide to develop better procurement processes and procedures. Most countries have official procurement legislation and regulations in place, though these are not always properly followed or enforced.
Many bilateral and multilateral development finance institutions have developed their own procurement guidelines and procedures. Loan or grant conditions often require that these guidelines be adhered to in order to comply with transparency and accountability requirements.
Our experience with procurement systems gives us the ability to provide clarity and guidance to others in their efforts to comply with both national and donor procurement rules and regulations for development assistance programmes.
As well as advising others, we are often engaged to undertake procurement activities directly on behalf of clients.
We also provide formal training courses and on-the-job technical assistance for government departments responsible for procurement processes, and for local consultants and contractors in the preparation of technical and financial proposals, negotiation skills and effective contract management.
Between 2000 and 2004, IMC Worldwide supported a policy reform programme to strengthen public sector economic and financial management in Yemen. IMC was responsible for the identification and procurement of computer hardware and software to be used in six government ministries and authorities, at central and governorate level; and of provision of training by suppliers in Yemen and overseas. Robust procedures were put in place and followed throughout.
In 2007-8, working with the Ministry of Transport in Tajikistan, we helped define technical specifications, drafted tender documentation in line with EBRD’s Procurement Guidelines, advised on the evaluation process and provided assistance during the reception and deployment of approximately US$6 million of road maintenance equipment being provided under grant funding from the EBRD and Dutch Government, to help improve maintenance of Tajikistan's road network.
In Bangladesh, in 2010, IMC was engaged as Project Management Consultant on the Fael Khair Schools/Shelter Programme, under which over 200 school buildings, which will also serve as cyclone shelters, are being built in response to the 2007 Cyclone Sidr. IMC staff are responsible for administration and supervision of four design consultants. Extensive support is being provided in the design and preparation of tender documents; prequalification, tender evaluation and award of contracts to supervision consultants and contractors.
Between 2007 and 2012, in Vietnam, IMC helped the Vietnam Road Administration (VRA) to develop a strategy for the implementation of a pilot programme of performance-based contracting on selected portions of the national road network. We assisted the VRA to manage the procurement process for the pilot contracts and developed and delivered a procurement training programme for VRA staff and managers.
In Uganda, IMC is acting as the secretariat of the newly created Road Construction Industry Council. Technical assistance is being provided under the DFID/EU-funded Creating Opportunities for Sustainable Spending on Roads (CrossRoads) programme. We are assisting DFID with the procurement process: appointing contractors to implement the programme, drafting appropriate technical specifications and contracts and providing advice to DFID on all contractual issues. We have put in place stringent procedures to be followed by contractors, and suppliers of other services.
The Rural Access Programme (RAP), a £32 million DFID-funded poverty alleviation programme targeting seven
of Nepal's poorest districts, involves the construction of hundreds of kilometres of rural roads using labour-based, environmentally sound principles.
IMC is responsible for all procurement involved in the project — of supervision consultants and contractors; of NGOs (who in turn coordinate the local labour inputs), of the material and equipment needed in road construction; and of providers of specialist inputs relating to complementary social and economic project activities.