At the end of last year, Government published the National Action Plan for Green Public Procurement, which began to be implemented from the beginning of this year.
Speaking at the press conference on Tuesday, Ministers Mario de Marco and Tonio Fenech announced the results of green public procurement uptake during the first three quarters of the year.
Between 2nd January and 30th September 2012, 113 tenders falling within 18 product and service groups identified in the National Action Plan for Green Public Procurement amounting to a value of around €15.9 million were fully compliant with GPP criteria. This amounts to 4.5% by number and 5.3% by value of all tenders published during this period and to 22.2% by number and approximately 23.2% by value of total tenders for GPP product groups.
In addition to tenders that have already been published as at the end of September 2012, an additional 15 tenders amounting to €7.6 million were found to be compliant and are due to be published in the coming weeks. Once published, these tenders would increase the percentage of GPP-compliant tenders to 24.4% by number and 30.9% by value of the tenders that fall within GPP product groups.
During this period, Government established a green public procurement function, which ensures that all government tenders are screened for compliance with GPP criteria, and provides advice on a daily basis both to government procurers, and to suppliers interested in engaging in GPP tenders.
Ten information sessions targeting over 400 representatives of public procurers and private suppliers were also held over the past few months. National guidelines and technical standards were developed with respect to products and services falling within GPP product groups. A website www.gpp.gov.mt containing GPP materials and guidance was also set up. The government also contributed to the development of GPP policy at EU level by actively participating in the EU GPP advisory group.
Welcoming these achievements, Minister Tonio Fenech said that throughout this legislature Government’s showed a continuous commitment towards a cleaner environment and sustainable development, which have significant long-term health and economic benefits. Several initiatives, including major investments carried out during the past five years back up such a commitment. Through green public procurement Government is leading by example. The benefit of such a process is that it fits with its efforts to encourage further the expansion of a local green economy, which is an important emergent source of job creation.
Minister Mario de Marco said that the National Environment Policy adopted earlier this year recognizes that a shift to a greener economy would require strong signals and incentives on the part of the government. He said that Green Public Procurement is intended to strengthen both the environment and the economy. Mario de Marco said that Green Public Procurement is not a luxury we desire, but an economic necessity that we cannot do without. He stated that over the past few months, the Green Public Procurement requirements have led to a growing realisation that Green Public Procurement yields multiple benefits, both in terms of value for money and long term savings, in terms of presenting business opportunities for suppliers, in terms of increasing awareness and reducing impact on the environment. Building a green economy encourages the creation of high quality employment and market opportunities, whilst reducing our impact on the environment. This is certainly the way of the future, Minister de Marco added.
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