Search

 

Cablegate: Bahraini Tender Board Brings Transparency To

This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.

UNCLAS MANAMA 001388

SIPDIS

DEPT FOR NEA/ARPI DEPT PASS USTR JBUNTIN, CMILLER,
WCLATANOFF COMMERCE FOR CLOUSTAUNAU

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: ECON ETRD PREL BA
SUBJECT: BAHRAINI TENDER BOARD BRINGS TRANSPARENCY TO
PROCESS


--------------------------------
Evidence of Improved Transparency
---------------------------------

1. (U) The Ambassador paid an introductory call on Minister
of State and Chairman of the Tenders Board Abdul Hussein Ali
Mirza on September 6, discussed the upcoming Bahrain Free
Trade Agreement (FTA), and reviewed the recently implemented
tender process. The Ambassador noted that the FTA would
increase U.S. business interest in GOB tenders and that a
transparent and user-friendly tender process was particularly
important to American companies. Mirza called the Board,s
efforts to streamline the process and ensure transparency a
significant success, and pointed to improved ratings from
Standard and Poor,s and on the Financial Times transparency
index as unbiased evidence corroborating his claim. Mirza
commented that Bahraini business people are uncertain as to
how they can benefit from the FTA. He urged the Ambassador
to take a leading role in helping to define those benefits.

--------------------------------------------- --------------
Tender Board Established in Response to Corruption Concerns
--------------------------------------------- --------------

2. (U) Mirza said that managing the Tender Board takes up
most of his time. The Board was established in January 2003
in response to public calls for greater transparency and
credibility in government procurement. The law establishing
the Tender Board drew on best practices from regional
governments as well as the United States and the UN. All
tenders over BD 10,000 are now managed by the Tender Board
(in consultation with the concerned ministry), while those
under BD 10,000 continue to be managed by ministries
themselves. Since its inception in 2003 the Tenders Board
has processed and awarded approximately 1,300 tenders worth
an estimated $1.3 billion.

--------------
Implementation
--------------

3. (U) According to Mirza, the Board,s procedures have been
transparent from the outset. All tenders are unsealed in an
open meeting, bids are recorded and stamped to ensure they
cannot be tampered with, and posted on the Board,s website.
The Board uses a "two envelope" policy for tenders that
require a technical component. This involves opening the
technical bid first to ensure that all bidders meet the
specifications and, once confirmed, opening the financial bid
to ensure the contract goes to the least expensive qualified
bidder.

4. (U) To ensure that the process is cost effective as well
as fair and transparent, Mirza has begun to collect data to
determine if amounts budgeted during the previous year by
ministries implementing a project are the same as or less
than actual costs. He estimates the government has saved BD
30 million since January 2003. The Tender Board is now also
tracking the time period between a Request for Proposal and
tender award to measure the efficiency of the Board and the
concerned ministries.
MONROE

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
World Headlines

 


Myanmar: Military Must Stop Murdering And Jailing Protestors – Bachelet

UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet on Thursday said security forces in Myanmar must “halt their vicious crackdown on peaceful protestors,” following another day of deadly violence across the country on Wednesday... More>>

Syria: Economic Decline, Rising Hunger And Surging Humanitarian Needs

Syria’s fragile economy has “suffered multiple shocks” over the past 18 months, with its currency plummeting and joblessness swelling as people struggle to cover their basic needs, the UN Emergency Relief Coordinator told the Security Council ... More>>

OECD: Final Quarter Of 2020 Shows Continued Recovery In G20 International Merchandise Trade

G20 international merchandise trade continued to rebound in the fourth quarter of 2020 ( exports up 7.2% and imports up 6.8%), following the sharp falls seen in the first half of 2020, as lockdown measures affected trade globally. Although growth ... More>>


Focus On: UN SDGs


UNFCCC: Greater Climate Ambition Urged As Initial NDC Synthesis Report Is Published

UN Climate Change today published the Initial NDC Synthesis Report, showing nations must redouble efforts and submit stronger, more ambitious national climate action plans in 2021 if they’re to achieve the Paris Agreement goal of limiting global temperature rise by 2°C—ideally 1.5°C—by the end of the century... More>>


2021: Critical Year To ‘reset Our Relationship With Nature’ – UN Chief

During this time of “crisis and fragility”, the UN chief told the United Nations Environment Assembly on Monday that human well-being and prosperity can be vastly improved by prioritizing nature-based solutions. Painting a picture of the turmoil ... More>>


Paris Agreement: UN Secretary-General António Guterres To Mark U.S. Reentry With Envoy For Climate John Kerry

Watch live at webtv.un.org UN Secretary-General António Guterres will join U.S. Special Presidential Envoy for Climate John F. Kerry at an event marking the United States’ reentry into the Paris Agreement this Friday. The discussion with the Secretary-General ... More>>