National Implementation and Use of Country Systems - Bangladesh

Using a country’s own institutions and systems increases aid effectiveness by strengthening the partner country’s sustainable capacity to develop, implement and account for its policies to its citizens and parliament. In Bangladesh almost half the population remains poor and the country faces many challenges in achieving its MDG targets for 2015. For instance, the Government of Bangladesh is committed to achieving 100% sanitation coverage by 2010 and 100% safe water supply coverage by 2011. Yet the public procurement system still suffers from a number of major weaknesses, including a lack of a procurement monitoring framework, insufficient advisory services or guidelines, and no established procurement training programmes.

The Embassy of Denmark is also supporting the Government in aligning its procurement activities with the nationals systems of Bangladesh through the water supply and sanitation sector programme. Union Parishads are elected bodies and form the lowest local government unit in the rural areas of Bangladesh; the Unions are the focal point for implementation of all these activities.

With the support of the UN Procurement Capacity Development Centre, the local Union in Baldhara conducted the procurement for 29 dug wells, five rainwater harvesting systems and 10 deep tube wells. To date more than 600 families in Baldhara have benefited from this initiative. The news has spread that the water from the new pumps is good and the demand is now increasing from other villages for similar hand pumps. Mr. Mia and his colleagues are now preparing a new proposal for funds for additional wells and the replacement of latrines.

There remain some capacity issues to be resolved, however. The compulsory standard bidding documents are in English, which neither the Union members nor the suppliers speak. They are hoping that standard bidding documents will be issued in Bangla, which will make things easier and will increase the transparency and accountability of the procurement process.