Public Sector Printing Requirements
Written by Miriam Zarb, Raquel Micallef
Information Technology has radically changed the way people work, and as digital tools develop and improve, work practices and flows are increasingly going electronic. As the Public Sector is moving (at an increasing pace) towards the digital realm, printing remains a crucial requirement since rules, regulations and indeed to a certain extent, legislation, still call for a paper-centric environment, with workers still relying to a great extent on printed documents to carry out their jobs and ensure an adequate level of traceability and accountability.
MITA moved to facilitate the procurement of printers across the Public Sector by establishing a Dynamic Purchasing System (DPS) in March 2020, seeking to address a number of issues, including:
- The streamlining of the procurement process
- Attracting a broader spectrum of suppliers
- Harmonizing contract terms and conditions
- Achieving greater value for money
On the first anniversary of the establishment of this DPS, some facts and figures shed light on whether the aims set out are being met.
The DPS mechanism entails that whenever a procurement requirement exists, a specific contract invitation is sent to all admitted participants. Up to the 23 March 2021, ninety-nine specific contract invitations were dispatched from a variety of twenty-six Contracting Authorities. Out of these, six are still open, and forty are under evaluation. Of the remaining closed invitations, twenty were cancelled because of varying reasons (no bids, no compliant offer received, change in technical parameters), and thirty-three contracts were awarded to seven different Economic Operators.
An analysis of the twenty-six concluded contracts sees five of them being awarded above the published estimate, and twenty-one below the published estimate. The combined tender estimate of these tenders was €242,834, whilst the combined contract value of these awards add up to €133,192, meaning that savings to the tune of €109,642 (45.15% of the original estimate) were registered.
The average lead time from deadline for submission of tenders to the date of award was of 48.5 calendar days.
Sectoral Procurement Directorate
With the recent modifications to the Public Procurement Regulations, the newly set-up Sectoral Procurement Directorate (SPD) within the Office of the Prime Minister (OPM) and its Sectoral Procurement Units will start to manage and issue specific contracts on behalf of the Government Departments and Entities under the Units’ responsibility. Specific contract invitations shall henceforth be published by the SPD on behalf of the Contracting Authority requesting the service or supply.
How to be admitted to this DPS
This DPS shall remain established until March 2024, and with a budget of €500,000, it shall cater for many more specific contracts with some exceeding the €100,000 value. One main advantage of a DPS procedure is that it does not preclude new Economic Operators from seeking admission and participation. Additional information and the link to the DPS page on the Electronic Public Procurement System (from where the DPS Establishment Document can be obtained), is available from MITA’s procurement website, https://procurement.mita.gov.mt/resources/dps/dpsprinters-scanners/.
As the Public Sector is moving (at an increasing pace) towards the digital realm, printing remains a crucial requirement since rules, regulations and indeed to a certain extent, legislation, still call for a paper-centric environment, with workers still relying to a great extent on printed documents to carry out their jobs and ensure an adequate level of traceability and accountability.