The Union Cabinet on Wednesday approved expanding the mandate of Government e-Marketplace (GeM) to allow procurement by Cooperatives as buyers on the portal.
The decision was taken at a meeting of the union cabinet chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
Briefing about the decision, Union Minister Anurag Thakur said that the move would help Cooperatives in getting competitive prices through an open and transparent process.
At present, the platform is open for procurement by all government buyers which includes central and state ministries, departments, public sector enterprises, autonomous institutions, local bodies.
As per existing mandate, GeM is not available for use by private sector buyers. Suppliers (sellers) can be from across all segments from government or private.
“Each of the three pillars of GeM — inclusion, transparency and efficiency — have seen significant progress,” Thakur said.
As per the government, the contribution by MSMEs to the cumulative transaction value is about 58 per cent. Government believes that sellers and more than 8.54 lakh registered cooperatives and their 27 crore members would be benefited with this initiative.
The GeM was launched on August 9, 2016 by the Ministry of Commerce and Industry to create an open and transparent procurement platform for government buyers.
A Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV) by the name of Government e- Marketplace (GeM SPV) was set up as the National Public Procurement Portal on May 17, 2017 in pursuance of the approval of the union cabinet accorded on April 12, 2017.
After the cabinet decision, the validated list of cooperatives to be boarded on GeM — for pilot as well as subsequent scale up — will be decided by the Ministry of Cooperation in consultation with GeM SPV. This will ensure that technical capacity and logistics requirements of the GeM system are taken into account while deciding the pace of onboarding of Cooperative as buyers on GeM.
The Ministry of Cooperation would issue necessary advisories to encourage the Cooperative Societies to make use of the GeM platform for procurement of goods and services in order to benefit from increased transparency, efficiency and competitive prices.
To protect interests of the broader seller community on GeM and ensure timely payments, the modalities of payment systems shall be decided by GeM in consultation with the Ministry of Cooperation.