Streamlining state procurements will save 100 million euros annually

The Regional Development and Competitiveness Ministry aims to reduce public sector spending by 100 million euros annually through a series of initiatives being taken to streamline the state procurements system, deputy minister Dinos Rovlias told a press conference on Tuesday.

He said that the government is clamping down on the "closed network of state supplies" and the "suspicious supplies cases are taking the road to justice", adding that the government is determined to tackle every source of waste and corruption in the area of state supplies.

Rovlias explained that the single procurements program has amounted to between 1 and 2.5 billion euros over the past three years, noting that one of the fundamental problems ascertained was lengthy delays in tenders, some of which are still pending since 2001. He further noted inadequacy in the tenders themselves, given that in the period 2008-2010, in half the tender files opened, only one offer had been submitted in 61 cases and only two offers in 78 cases.

Further, instances have been traced and have been halted of applications for "luxury" supplies, in a bid to reduce the budget, citing as an example a request by the City of Athens for Christmas tree lights budgeted at some 300,000 euros.

Measures being taken include detailed study of every new application and prohibition of changes to the technical and other specifications or other contractual conditions after the procurement has been assigned.

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