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Wednesday 15.08.2018 | Name days: Dzelde, Zenta, Zelda

Green public procurement criteria are applied to only 12% of procurements

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Baltic news, News from Latvia, BNN.LV, BNN-NEWS.COM, BNN-NEWS.RUOnly 12% of public procurements are applied with green public procurement criteria, according to information compiled by Procurement Monitoring Bureau for last year.

Although efforts have been put into introducing green public procurements, it remains important to increase their introduction in municipal procurements, as well as ensure expansion of appropriate service and product offers from businessmen. This was mentioned by expert from different fields who participated in the final meeting of Riga Planning Region’s GreenS project.

As noted by GreenS project’s representatives Aija Zučika, seven discussions held during the project discussed very important topics that will contribute to the use of green procurements in municipal procurements in the future.

«There have been discussions about examples of good practices, application of different criteria, as well as development of appropriate offers by businessmen, which is one of the obstacles for more expansive application of criteria in certain fields. Green public procurements represent a new practice for Latvia. This is why in order to provide support to municipal procurement specialists, Riga planning regions and experts developed criteria and technical specification documents. A special catalogue with environmentally friendly services and products is currently in development to help make work of municipal specialists easier,» explains Zučika.

Māris Klismets, director of the Coordination Department of Environmental Protection and Regional Development Ministry, mentions that Latvia becomes more and more educated in the field of green public procurements year after year.

«For a procurement to be considered green now, it has to comply with much stricter requirements than the ones that were in place three years ago. With that, a more realistic goal is for green procurement ratio to reach 20% of all procurements. It is already planned to work more intensely and discuss municipal executive power, which has been identified as one of the factors that delays application of green procurement criteria in municipalities, because environmentally friendly services and goods are often more expensive. Another direction worth working towards includes construction and food procurements that affect volumes of green procurements. It is planned to promote use of construction life-cycle costs calculator,» explains Klismets.

He also says that 2017 was notable for sorting out green public procurement processes – a new Public Procurements Law was approved, as were new Cabinet of Ministers requirements that govern application of criteria in procurements. One of the reasons why use of green procurements grows more slowly in Latvia than it does in other countries is the rapid use of EU funds. Inclusion of environmentally friendly criteria simply cannot keep up.

Public Procurement Bureau’s Legislation Application Department’s director deputy Oskars Putāns mentions that based on new regulations it can be concluded that procurement specialists were confused with the way green criteria are to be realized in practice.

«This could be one of the reasons why we haven’t seen a rapid increase of green public procurement criteria within the total number of procurements. Last year, Procurements Monitoring Bureau received only ten applications detailing problems with food procurements associated with use of aforementioned rules. One important condition to help develop green procurements is continued education of our clients about our desire to focus on the most economically viable, not cheapest, offer,» says Putāns.

Elita Kļaviņa, manager of State Regional Development Agency’s Electronic Procurement Department’s Catalogue Content Office, informs that the system’s turnover of goods and services in 2017 reached EUR 68.5 million.

Goods compliant with green procurement criteria were bought in the Electronic Procurement System in a volume worth a total of EUR 11.7 million. The system’s catalogue includes six out of seven goods and services groups applied with green procurement criteria. One group that is not included is street lighting systems and traffic lights, as BNN was informed by Riga Planning Region.


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