Marcos approves e-marketplace for gov't procurement

(FILES) Job-led economic growth, among other reasons, is behind why President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. signed into law Republic Act 11962, or the ‘Act Establishing the National Employment Master Plan,’ to be known as the ‘Trabaho Para sa Bayan Plan,’ in a ceremony at Malacañan Palace on Wednesday, 27 September. Looking on are (from left) National Economic and Development Authority Secretary Arsenio Balisacan, Senator Imee Marcos, Executive Secretary Lucas Bersamin, Senate President Miguel Zubiri, House Speaker Martin Romualdez, Labor and Employment Secretary Bienvenido Laguesma, Trade and Industry Secretary Alfredo Pascual, Budget and Management Secretary Amenah F. Pangandaman and Parañaque City 2nd District Representative Gustavo S. Tambunting.
(FILES) Job-led economic growth, among other reasons, is behind why President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. signed into law Republic Act 11962, or the ‘Act Establishing the National Employment Master Plan,’ to be known as the ‘Trabaho Para sa Bayan Plan,’ in a ceremony at Malacañan Palace on Wednesday, 27 September. Looking on are (from left) National Economic and Development Authority Secretary Arsenio Balisacan, Senator Imee Marcos, Executive Secretary Lucas Bersamin, Senate President Miguel Zubiri, House Speaker Martin Romualdez, Labor and Employment Secretary Bienvenido Laguesma, Trade and Industry Secretary Alfredo Pascual, Budget and Management Secretary Amenah F. Pangandaman and Parañaque City 2nd District Representative Gustavo S. Tambunting.

President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. has approved the Department of Budget and Management's (DBM) e-Marketplace Procurement System to modernize and further amend the Philippine Government Electronic Procurement System (PhilGEPS). 

In a Palace briefing on Tuesday, Budget Secretary Amenah Pangandaman said the e-marketplace is part of the agency's efforts to digitalize the government’s procurement system and address concerns about the procurement process.

Malacañang, for its part, mentioned that Marcos' approval came during today’s sectoral meeting, where the Procurement Service of DBM (PS-DBM) presented the enhancements and implementation status of the e-Marketplace. 

This virtual store is set to be piloted before the end of July this year following Marcos' directive last August to explore including all goods, such as office supplies, vehicles, and heavy equipment, in an online marketplace for government procurement. 

Pangandaman explained that the initiative aims to connect businesses, consumers, and suppliers in a digital environment, improving service delivery to the public.

"The e-Marketplace is a digital platform that facilitates buying and selling activities between multiple buyers and sellers. It’s similar to Lazada, Amazon, and Shopee, and it represents a significant component of digital transformation," Pangandaman said.

"The ongoing procurement reforms, including the proposed amendments to the 20-year-old Government Procurement Reform Act, are our way of making our procurement system efficient, transparent, reliable, sustainable and future-proof," Pangandaman added.

PS-DBM executive director, Atty. Dennis Santiago, who was also present during the Palace briefing, further elaborated on the e-Marketplace's functionalities as an addition to the modernized PhilGEPS (mPhilGEPS). 

He explained that it would offer a central platform for both government agencies and sellers to browse, compare, and transact on various products, significantly reducing procurement lead times.

The e-Marketplace launch is anticipated by the end of July or early August 2024. It is envisioned to be a key component of the proposed New Government Procurement Act (NGPA), providing a user-friendly and efficient platform for government procurement.

''This is also included in the NGPA or the New Government Procurement Act as a proposal and we hope to provide the platform [for] both for sellers and buyers -- meaning, sellers, market operators, and of course, government as buyers -- to look into products, multiple products in one platform where they can choose, where they can select and, of course, order and actually pay ‘no everything through the system,'' Santiago said.

When asked about the time and cost savings expected with the new platform, Santiago said the agencies can procure in one day compared to the usual procurement process which could take 26 to 136 days.

"With the e-Marketplace, you have products already in the system, then the government procuring entities will have to select from those products and make an order right there," Santiago said.

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