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During the week of 18-22 June 2012, the Heads of Procurement (HoP) from a number of Multilateral Development Banks* met in the EBRD Headquarters in London to discuss selected topics in regards to procurement under projects financed by the Banks.
The HoP meets every 9 months and have during the last 10 years achieved considerable progress in the harmonization of MDB procurement principles, policies and procedures, including standard tender documents enabling easier co-financing and the alignment of procedures by borrowers. Continuing HoP focus on standardization of tender documentation (that also incorporates extensive discussions with private sector stakeholders) is intended to reflect best practice and facilitate broad competition between private sector firms in different areas of the world. HoPs recognize, however, that not all procurement processes can be standardized and aim to balance the twin imperatives of harmonization and, assuming adequate capacity, use of local systems.
Topics during the meeting in London included the World Banks comprehensive policy review, the use of new and innovative contract forms, including in regard to design-build and turnkey projects, contract management and monitoring and the broad role of the Engineer in works contracts, ICT procurement and the adoption of harmonized procurement principles on PPP operations. Also discussed were issues in relation to social, environment and labour issues, current topics like abnormally low tender prices and local preferences and finalization of a principles - based approach to best practices in private sector procurement, including concessions. The next meeting will be hosted by the African Development Bank in 2013.
*Asian Development Bank, African Development Bank, Black Sea trade and Development Bank, Caribbean Development Bank, Council of Europe Bank, European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, European Investment Bank, Inter-American Development Bank, Islamic Development Bank and the World Bank