OECD Principles for Integrity in Public Procurement

image of OECD Principles for Integrity in Public Procurement
The OECD Principles for Integrity in Public Procurement are a ground-breaking instrument that promotes good governance in the entire procurement cycle, from needs assessment to contract management. Based on acknowledged good practices in OECD and non-member countries, they represent a significant step forward. They provide guidance for the implementation of international legal instruments developed within the framework of the OECD, as well as other organisations such as the United Nations, the World Trade Organisation and the European Union.

In addition to the Principles, this exhaustive publication includes a Checklist for implementing the framework throughout the entire public procurement cycle. It also gives a comprehensive map of risks that can help auditors prevent as well as  detect fraud and corruption. Finally, it features a useful case study on Morocco, where a pilot application of the Principles was carried out.

“The Checklist will help governments and agencies to develop more transparent, efficient procurement systems”

-Nicolas Raigorodsky, Under-secretary of Transparency Policies, Anticorruption Office, Argentina

“Public procurement is one of the most important public governance issues. Action is needed to ensure integrity by reducing bribery and corruption”

-Business and Industry Advisory Committee to the OECD

“The general thrust and content of the document is commendable. Much of it tracks very closely to the United Nations Convention Against Corruption and the United Nations Commission on International Trade Law Model Law”

-Stuart Gilman, Head of the UN Global Programme Against Corruption and the Anticorruption Unit, United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime

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Accountability and Control

Defining the level of authority for approval of spending, sign off and approval of key stages, based on an appropriate segregation of duties, is essential to establish a clear chain of responsibility. Internal guidelines should clarify the level of responsibility, the required knowledge and experience, the corresponding financial limits and the obligation of recording in writing of key stages in the public procurement cycle. In the case of delegated authority, it is important to explicitly define the delegation of power of signature, the acknowledgement of responsibility and the obligations for internal reporting. These processes should be embedded in daily management and supported by adequate communication and training. Managers play an important role in leading by example and enhancing integrity in the culture of the organisation. They are in charge of setting expectations for officials in performing to appropriate standards and are ultimately responsible for irregularities and corruption.

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