PUBLIC orders in Slovakia and the Czech Republic are manipulated, according to a majority of clerks who participated in the survey carried out by Otidea consulting firms on more than 600 procurers in the two countries, the SITA newswire reported on October 14.
Up to 85 percent of respondents said there is evident effort to manipulate the results of current tenders. The reasons and extent of this manipulation however differ in the countries. While in Slovakia up to one half of respondents said the main reason for manipulation is corruption, only one third of respondents in the Czech Republic expressed the same opinion. Direct corruption as a main reason for manipulation was supported by 30 percent of Slovak respondents, but only by 16 percent of Czechs.
Moreover, every fourth Slovak clerk assumes that more than one half of orders are manipulated, while in the Czech Republic it is only every seventh person.
“The results of the survey correspond with the actual situation in Slovakia,” said Tomáš Langr, head of Otidea, as quoted by SITA, adding that Slovak clerks give worse evaluations to the current state of public orders than their Czech colleagues.
For 40 percent of Slovak clerks the main motive for manipulations is the effort to choose the company with which the procurers were satisfied in the past. In the Czech Republic the percentage of respondents with such opinions are higher: up to 55 percent. The current legislation in both countries however does not allow it.
“European directives allow taking the bad experience with the company into consideration,” said Andrea Matúšová, education manager in Otidea, as quoted by SITA. “It however depends on the member states how they use this possibility in new laws on public orders.”
The survey also showed that 98 percent of procurers in both countries still make decisions based on the lowest bid, with 80 percent of respondents even saying they use this principle in most of the cases. One third of them say they do it because they are afraid of the possible complaints on non-transparency submitted by failed bidders, while 45 percent say the main reason is the will to secure the frugality of the order.
“The law does not order evaluations of the orders based on the price rather than quality,” Langr said, as quoted by SITA. “The key is the practice of ministries and other state bodies. The state issued the law but did not teach procurers to work with its rules.”
Compiled by Radka Minarechová from press reports
The Slovak Spectator cannot vouch for the accuracy of the information presented in its Flash News postings.
14. Oct 2014 at 14:00