Issues pertaining to public procurement will be examined next week, when 75 public and private sector officials from Barbados and CARICOM member states, and 19 international speakers, converge at the Lloyd Erskine Sandiford Centre for a three-day meeting.

The Third Sub-Regional Caribbean Public Procurement Conference will be held on June 13 and 14, while the session on June 15 will only be for Heads of Procurement in CARICOM.

Some of the topics to be discussed include: Transition from the Financial Rules to the Public Procurement Act in Barbados; Public Procurement links to other Strategic Public Sector Functions; Towards a Regional Public Procurement Marketplace in the Caribbean; and Effects of Gender Inclusive Policies in Public Procurement.

This workshop will give the members of the Inter-American Network Government Procurement (INGP) an opportunity to discuss their priorities and seek technical assistance in order to pursue the goals of the member states.

They will also be exposed to experts so they can learn about international best practices as most member states, including Barbados, are modernising their procurement systems.

Describing the conference as ???timely???, an official said CARICOM was also establishing a regional procurement system that must be put in place by all member states. She pointed out that this system, along with the Regional Procurement Notice Board, would be discussed during the meeting.

The INGP was formed in 2004 by Latin American and Caribbean countries as a medium for regional technical co-operation. It is made up of the Heads of Procurement in the member countries; the Organisation of American States, which performs the role of Technical Secretariat; the Inter-American Development Bank; and the International Development Centre.

The INGP has focused its attention on facilitating the exchange of experiences and best practices among its members, thus seeking to reduce the time, cost and risk of implementing new initiatives.??Its first meeting was held in Jamaica in 2011.

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