Northern Ireland Assembly
Committee Welcomes New Private Sector Representation on Procurement Board
The Northern Ireland Assembly Public Accounts Committee recently welcomed the announcement by the Minister of Finance that there will be private sector representation on a new Procurement Board.
The Procurement Board, chaired by the Minister of Finance, oversees the purchase of goods, services and construction required by Northern Ireland Executive departments. Public procurement expenditure accounts for some £3 billion each year, and represents a quarter of the Executive’s budget.
William Humphrey, Chairperson of the Public Accounts Committee recently said:
“Our Committee is pleased that the Minister has agreed to include representatives from the private sector on the Executive’s new Procurement Board.
“Our Committee recently published a report into Major Capital Projects which looked at the way that these projects had been procured, managed and delivered over a number of years. In our evidence sessions, we heard from the Construction Employers Federation which expressed their desire to contribute to the public procurement process.
“We believe that the procurement process, and therefore Northern Ireland as a whole, benefits from private sector involvement in procurement, particularly as these companies have experience of delivering complex projects. Their input should help to ensure that the procurement procedure is both more robust and efficient and delivers better value for money.
“We are keen to see how the new Procurement Board will operate and have asked for a copy of its terms of reference so that we can keep this issue under review.”
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