Sharing Knowledge and Ideas
Poland’s procurement officials are eager to share their experiences with their international colleagues, says Xavier Devictor, World Bank Country Manager for Poland and the Baltic States. “For many developing countries the challenge is not what to do but how to do it, how to do reforms and, in this context, it is very important to hear from practitioners, from those countries that had already done it, what has worked, what has not worked, what has been the experience, and how it could possibly be tailored or adjusted for the specific country’s circumstances.”
A Visit from Vietnam
In a trip that was facilitated by the World Bank, a delegation from Vietnam visited Poland in the Spring of 2013. “As you know, currently we are drafting a law on public procurement.” says Nguyen Xuan Dao, of the Public Procurement Agency of Vietnam. “We hope that this year we can finalize and wrap and submit it to the government and the Parliament for approval. So we came here to Poland for learning, for experience on public procurement.”
Polish officials say the sharing of knowledge and ideas is crucial. “I hope that our guests are going to benefit from it as well; that I have benefitted from this meeting is quite obvious to me. I learn a lot about other countries thanks to such meetings,” says Dariusz Piasta, Vice-Chairman of the Polish Public Procurement Office. “To me, meeting representatives of administration of other countries is sort of a surrogate of traveling the world. Meeting such people is very valuable as it allows learning a lot about other cultures and other experiences. I also hope that the delegations also learn something about the public procurement system in Poland, and that these meetings are beneficial for them.”
Public spending is a huge part of any country’s budget and one that, in the past, was subject to allegations of cronyism and corruption. The new electronic and more transparent system is meant to keep the money flowing to the public part of procurement…for the benefit of all.