The Prime Minister has launched the Government's Contracts Finder, a new online tool that displays details of all new procurement opportunities, tender documents and contracts for central government over £10,000.
The new initiative is the latest measure aimed at removing unecessary obstacles that make government procurement difficult for small businesses.
Speaking at the launch event at the Treasury buildings in London, the PM said the Government was determined to sweep away “ridiculous rules and bureaucracy” and make government procurement “more welcoming” for small and medium-sized enterprises. The Government’s goal, he said, is to ensure that at least a 25 percent share of government contracts end up awarded to SMEs.
Today, we are announcing big changes to the way government does business. By that, I mean what I say: literally, the way it does business. The contracts it signs, the goods and services it purchases - and the way it purchases them.
We need to make the system much more open, more competitive and transparent.
The PM listed other measures that the Government has introduced in its drive to increase accountability and transparency, including the publication of all existing contracts above £25k in value and the ongoing SME feedback facility on the Number 10 website. Mr Cameron called upon SMEs to sieze the opportunities being opened up and urged procurement mangers to take risks with “new, small and dynamic companies”.
The Government will introduce other measures to encourage more open competition, such as breaking up large contracts into smaller parts, encouraging more sub-contracting by major suppliers and holding an open procurement competition from May 2011.
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