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Mainstreaming SPP in the Western Cape Province through performance-based procurement (10YFP Trust Fund Project)

  • Published on January 9, 2018
Enabling the introduction of output, functional or performance-based (PB) procurement to public in the Western Cape has been identified as an innovative and complementary addition to existing SPP knowledge and practice. The International Institute for Sustainable Development together with WWF South Africa is working with the Western Cape province to analyze the barriers to PB procurement and provide solutions with the ultimate aim to scale-up the use of SPP as a driver of the green economy.

"Mainstreaming SPP in the Western Cape Province through performance-based procurement" is a 10YFP Trust Fund Project.
This project is designed to directly contribute to the province's and South Africa's green growth and sustainable development goals. It builds upon previous SPP work and initiatives already taking place in Western Cape and nationally, including an IISD-led project in 2013-14 and joint and separate work of WWF South Africa with the Western Cape government. Previous research by IISD in cooperation with WWF South Africa demonstrates that the legal, institutional and policy frameworks in South Africa and the Western Cape are supportive of SPP but have not been taken fully advantage of.

By introducing the business case for performance-based procurement, addressing potential public accounting hurdles, through the development of a guidance tool and conducting capacity building, the project is expected to contribute to:

• Knowledge on the feasibility, challenges and approaches to realize performance-based procurement in Western Cape with a relevance for South and southern Africa;
• Increased awareness and capacity of municipal and provincial procurement officers on performance-based procurement and SPP more broadly;
• Increased awareness and capacity of Provincial Treasury officials and provincial and municipal financial officers on performance-based procurement and public accounting implications;
• Guidance tools and materials will have been produced that procurers can use (also beyond the project duration) to enable performance-based procurement. Initial research on the current state of play on SPP and performance-based procurement was undertaken in the first year of the project, followed by a validation workshop of those findings in November 2016. This workshop also identified the next steps of the project, and assessed the needs of the Western Cape supply chain management, provincial treasury and municipalities to enhance performance-based procurement. This workshop also served as a first round of capacity building and awareness raising for all Western Cape stakeholders.

The project partners published a guidance tool for the implementation of performance-based procurement that addresses potential legal barriers, the business case, the accounting framework, and the skills set of public procurers. The guidance tool includes South African and international case studies.

A final workshop in March 2018 was hosted to launch the guidance tool and have a series of interactive exercises around the implementation of sustainable performance-based procurement. There has been increased awareness raising at the level of the province and selected municipalities in the Western Cape on the use of performance-based procurement to drive innovation and inclusive green growth. Interactions with the Provincial Treasury have also led to increased awareness on the business case for performance-based procurement and SPP more broadly. There is an increased understanding that thinking in terms of performance and the objectives that public procurement can achieve is possible within the current legal framework, and the case studies in South Africa - as will be described in the guidance tool - also prove that it works and leads to environmental, social, economic and financial benefits across the province. The workshops and capacity building events during which the guidance tool was used have increased the technical capacities of procurers to implement sustainable performance-based procurement and use the lessons learned from the national and international case studies Interested stakeholders can get in touch with Liesbeth Casier, SPP specialist and project lead at IISD.

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