Written answers

Thursday, 20 December 2012

Department of Education and Skills

National Procurement Service

Photo of Éamon Ó CuívÉamon Ó Cuív (Galway West, Fianna Fail)
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To ask the Minister for Education and Skills if he has any concerns regarding the effect on local small indigenous businesses as a result of circulars issuing from his Department in relation to the purchase of consumables such as stationary which state that from April 2013 it will be mandatory to purchase these from one named supplier thus depriving local businesses of a very important source of business; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [57726/12]

Photo of Ruairi QuinnRuairi Quinn (Dublin South East, Labour)
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The Government's Public Service Reform Plan recognises the key strategic importance of public procurement and provides for the development of a new policy framework for procurement. The Department of Public Expenditure and Reform notified Departments and public bodies of the mandatory requirement to use central contracts, put in place by the National Procurement Service (NPS), when procuring a range of commonly acquired goods and services. The current arrangements are set out in circular 6/12 Public Procurement (Framework Agreements). These national contracts are targeted at securing best value for money and facilitating Departments and agencies to deliver services within their budgetary constraints. Within the Education Sector, the mandatory arrangement relating to stationery currently applies to the Higher Education and VEC Sectors. I understand that the NPS are working on a new contract for stationery which will be in place from April 2013.


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