Low competition on local level tenders
Skopje, June 26, 2018 - The Center for Civil Communications announced today the results on Monitoring local level public procurement for the period April-September 2017, which showed the following key findings:
- Low competition in local tender procedures, whose multiannual average is calculated at 2.6 bids per tender procedure, continues this trend and stands below three bidders, which is considered minimum level of competition. In average, monitored tender procedures were marked by competition of 2.8 bidders. Additional concern is raised by increased share of tender procedures presented with one bid or no bids, which has risen to high 40% in this monitoring period and is the highest share observed in the last three years.
- The share of annulled public procurements in the monitoring sample has risen to 20%, reaching the highest threshold for the second time in the last five years. In as many as 50% of annulled tender procedures, reasons indicated for their annulment implied no bids received.
- Electronic auctions were held in only 58% of monitored tender procedures. They were successfully completed only in public procurements marked by higher competition, whereas downward bidding in the remaining share of tender procedures was formality and often raises concerns about previous arrangements between companies about their actions during e-auctions.
- Unlike any period in the past, throughout this monitoring period relevant data for as many as 28% of tender procedures requested through the instrument for free access to public information were secured only after appeals were lodged before the relevant commission for protection of this right.
Skopje, June 21, 2018 - The Center for Civil Communications announced today the Active Transparency Index for 2018, which means publishing public information on of the institutions' its own initiative.
The general degree of active transparency in Macedonia in 2018 remained low. The percentage of fulfillment of the obligations for active publication of information in all 97 participating institutions was 43.5% (out of 100%). The degree of active transparency in 2018 experienced a negligible rise compared to 2017 (when it averaged at 42.5%).
According to the ranking of active transparency, the most institutions, 35% fall into the group of 'average' active transparency, and the least, 2%, fall into the top group, the one exhibiting 'very good' active transparency.
Unlike the previous two years, this year, in general, ministries and the Government perform much better than the municipalities with respect to their active transparency. The municipalities occupy the first 2 positions of the ranking list, however the average score of all municipalities together experienced a drop to 39% from 41%, while the score of the ministries experienced a rise from 48% to 66%.
In terms of individual areas of active transparency - the institutions continue to publish most information on access to information, and least on budgetary and financial transparency.
In terms of regions, according to the average score, the best standing region is still the Pelagonia region, and the worst- the Polog region.
The municipalities responded within an average of 20 days, the ministries took 41 days to respond to the request for free access to public information sent to all on the same day and of the same content. 71% of the institutions responded to the request within the maximum statutory deadline of 30 days, а 29% sent a delayed response.
The survey was conducted within the Civica Mobilitas program which supports Center for Civil Communications' multi-annual program of activities.
Firms continue to be dissatisfied with public procurement
SKOPJE, June 13, 2018 - The Center for Civil Communications today published a report on the monitoring of public procurements conducted by the central level institutions for the period from July to December 2017.
Key findings from the survey findings based on interviews with 210 companies related to their experience from participation in public procurements, conducted in the period February-March 2018
- ‘Lowest price’ defined as single criterion to award public procurement contracts, delayed payment for contract performance and requirements related to voluminous documents for tender participation are the main problems in public procurements indicated by the companies.
- In average, surveyed companies wait 6 months and 21 days for payment of contracts performed. This average was 8 months under the survey conducted two years ago and 6 months under the survey conducted last year.
- 95% of surveyed companies believe that e-auctions result in attainment of unrealistically low prices and undermine quality of procurements on the account of their price.
- As many as 88% of surveyed companies believe corruption is present in public procurements, but indicated different assessments about its presence. The highest share, i.e. 47% of them believe corruption is present in public procurements, but rarely; 5% indicated corruption is always present; and 36% of companies reported that corruption is often present. Only 12% of companies indicated there is no corruption in public procurements.
- Dominant share of companies indicated that they often or rarely witnessed non-compliance with the Law of Public Procurements in tender procedures in which they participated.
- As many as 96% of surveyed companies never or rarely lodged appeals to contest tender procedures in which they participated, mainly due to high charges related to appeal procedures and their distrust in SCPPA.
- On the scale from 1 (negative) to 5 (excellent), companies gave an average score of 2.85 for the overall process of public procurements in the Republic of Macedonia. Compared to results obtained under the previous survey, deterioration by 0.28 points was observed in terms of companies’ satisfaction with tender procedures in which they participated, whereby the average score is again lower than 3.
Key findings from monitoring of public procurements:
- Public procurements reached a record low level in 2017. Value of public procurement contracts signed this year amounted to 624 million EUR compared to 962 million EUR contracted under public procurements implemented in 2016.
- Council of Public Procurements was terminated in late November 2017. There are no available data on effects from its operation in the last five months (July-November 2017). The special commission established at the Ministry of Finance did not disclose requested information.
- On annual level, annulled tender procedures accounted for 24% of all public procurements organized in 2017, which is the highest share recorded in the period 2013-2017.
- In 2017, satisfactory level of competition in tender procedures (3 and more bidders) was recorded with 48% of monitored public procurements. The share of tender procedures presented with only one bid is the lowest share recorded in the last 4 years and stands at 21%.
- In 2017, total of 496 public procurement contracts were signed without previously announced call for bids and their value amounted to 29 million EUR. As many as 12 million EUR or 42% of the total value were contracted by two institutions: Ministry of Education and Science and JSC Power Plants of Macedonia (ELEM).
Key findings from analysis of procedures led before the State Commission on Public Procurement Appeals in the period January - December 2017
- In 2017 companies lodged a total of 507 appeals before the State Commission on Public Procurement Appeals (SCPPA), which represents a decrease by around 9% compared to last year.
Most appeals were lodged against decisions on selection of the most favourable bid (65%). Next important grounds for lodging appeals, accounting for 15% of all appeals, concerned decisions taken by contracting authorities to annul tender procedures, while 8% of appeals were lodged to contest tender documents.