2015 EU-Taiwan Government Procurement Seminar
2015 台歐政府採購研討會 (中文請詳見本網頁下半部)
– The EU-Taiwan Government Procurement(GP) Seminar hosted a field of distinguished experts on public procurement, from both, the European Union and Taiwan, who exchanged experiences on the legal framework of Public Procurement and Public Private Partnership (PPP) for public infrastructure projects. More than 185 officials from the Taiwanese public entities, from European representative offices in Taiwan, from the industry and academia attended the seminar and participated in the lively panel discussion held at the end of the seminar, which provided a platform for further cooperation between the EU and Taiwan.The seminar was organized jointly by the European Economic and Trade Office (EETO), under the framework of the European Business and Regulatory Cooperation Programme (EBRC), the Public Construction Commission (PCC) of the Executive Yuan and the Bureau of Foreign Trade (BOFT) of the Ministry of Economic Affairs., and co-organised by the European Chamber of Commerce Taiwan (ECCT) and the Department for the Promotion of Private Participation of the Ministry of Finance (MOF).
Taipei, 22 January
The EU and Taiwan have been cooperating on Government Procurement since 2008 by organising annual seminars and through regulatory dialogues. The GP seminar provides a platform for all stakeholders to increase their understanding of the best practices of government procurement and to pave the way to facilitate the harmonization of Taiwan's regulatory standards with international practices, which will benefit Taiwanese public entities and ultimately taxpayers, as competition increases.
Viktoria Lövenberg, Deputy Head of Office of the EETO, Min-Chih Teng (鄧民治), Deputy Minister of the PCC, and Shu-Mei Yang, Deputy Director General of BOFT delivered opening remarks at the seminar by welcoming greater information exchanges and future cooperation between Europe and Taiwan.
Ms Lövenberg stated that public procurement is an important topic on the EU-Taiwan dialogue agenda. Both Taiwan and the EU are parties to the WTO's Government Procurement Agreement (GPA), and both representatives cooperate closely in Geneva. She indicated that the EU has recently undertaken a major reform and modernisation of its procurement rules. The new legislation has been adopted and will need to be transposed into national law by 2016. She said that the seminar plays a very useful role in enhancing confidence and mutual trust, and thus contributing to the realisation of the commonly-shared objective of transparent and fair procurement conduct.
Mr Min-Chih Teng, Deputy Minister of PCC declared that Taiwan joined the WTO’s plurilateral Agreement on Government Procurement (GPA) in 2009, and Taiwan’s Government Procurement Act complies with the provisions of GPA. He indicated that the seminar provides a good opportunity for participants to understand EU’s government procurement regulation, contract terms and best practices in Public Private Partnership.
Ms Shu-Mei Yang stated that Taiwan officially joined the GPA in July 2009. In the same year, the Bureau of Foreign Trade commissioned the Taiwan External Trade Development Council (TAITRA) to implement the Global Government Procurement Project, and launch the GPS Taiwan trade website to provide Taiwanese companies with the first-hand government procurement information from all over the world. She stated that BOFT will step up efforts to help to create a more business-friendly government procurement environment in Taiwan.
The European experts were Dr Michael Fruhman, from the Austrian Federal Chancellery, Ms. Marie Gøthgen Clasen, Attorney from Horten Law Firm, Denmark and Mr Francisco Alcoba, PPP Specialist of INECO, Spain. They explained how the most economically advantageous standard applies in the EU and how it has been more efficient for government construction works instead of the lowest price system often used by Taiwanese public entities in tenders, and how it will enable Taiwan to attain both high quality and cost-efficient public works. Mr Fruhman gave an overview of the reform process in Europe on public procurement (new Concessions Directive, new Utilities Directive and new Directive on e-invoicing) aimed at offering better access for small and medium enterprises, adding more flexibility and simplification and encouraging e-procurement. Ms Clasen explained the award criteria for contracting authorities in Europe and the useful method of scaling other criteria, not only price, from 0-100 and multiply it with its relative weighting. She highlighted that the evaluation should be an objective assessment of the tenders' satisfaction of the criteria not a comparison of the tenders. Mr. Alcoba noted how important are Public Private Partnership projects in a moment of government's budget constraints when authorities have to upgrade infrastructure networks and invest in its operational and maintenance plans. Mr Alcoba stressed the importance of publicity and transparency in PPP projects and the involvement of the citizens to satisfy their needs in public works. He also noted that public sector has to know that when the prerrogatives are too high then the competition will decrease. In order to make the process more transparent the public sector must reduce the prerrogatives in tenders and make a good planification prior to launch the tender.
The Taiwanese experts were Ms Tiffany Huang (黃台芬), ECCT Project and Procurement Committee Co-Chair Ms Chia-Chen Lee (李嘉珍), Deputy Director General, Department for the Promotion of Private Participation, MOF and Dr Chih-Hsiung Wu (吳志雄), Superintendent of Taipei Medical University - Shuang Ho Hospital. Ms. Huang explained the major issues of contract terms and conditions in Taiwan and how often conditions are interpreted in favour of procuring entities burdening foreign tendering. Ms Lee explained the legal framework of PPP projects in Taiwan, under the Act for Promotion of Private Participation in Infrastructure projects, initiated by the Public Construction Commission in 2000. She noted that since 2000 more than 979 PPP projects, worth more than US$22.13 billion in capital investment have helped to save more than US$26.36 billion in government expenditures and to create more than 100,000 jobs in Taiwan. She highlighted that the Ministry of Finance will strive to create a friendly investment environment and create a triple-win situation for the public sector, private sector and the people. Dr. Wu showed the successful experience of Shuang Ho Hospital, as an example of private participation in infrastructure project in Taiwan as a BOT (Build-Operate-Transfer) and how it allowed to maximize public resources and to create nongovernmental job opportunities.
A panel discussion and Q&A was held at the end of the seminar to discuss the life cycle of a procurement contract – from preparatory stage, planning, evaluation, implementation to afterwards management. The lively panel discussion was fitting end to a productive seminar that helped to improve understanding among stakeholders in public procurement.
「台歐政府採購研討會」邀請政府採購專家齊聚一堂，針對改善整體採購環境之經驗啟示與最佳實務以及民間參與公共建設(Public Private Partnership)提供深入見解與經驗分享。本次研討會吸引將近兩百位台歐政府機關、產學界及相關協會代表共襄盛舉，有助於利益相關者進一步了解政府採購最佳實務典範，以及如何達成高品質且合乎成本效率的公共工程。熱烈踴躍的討論不僅有助於增進政府與產業間的相互了解，並為日後進一步的合作提供了絕佳平台。
本次研討會邀集歐洲與台灣雙邊的專家，歐洲專家代表為奧地利聯邦總理府法規管理局單位首長Michael Fruhmann博士、丹麥Horten法律事務所助理律師Marie Gøthgen Clasen女士、西班牙INECO公司資深技師Francisco Alcoba先生。歐洲專家針對新的歐盟採購政策與法規架構、丹麥的契約條款與履約案例、丹麥和西班牙的民間參與公共建設經驗發表了精闢的演說。歐洲專家闡述歐盟如何採行「最具經濟優勢」標準，相較於台灣公部門招標時常用的「最低價」標準，「最具經濟優勢標」能使政府建設更為有效率，並且能幫助台灣取得高品質且具成本效益的公共建設。Fruhmann先生簡述歐洲公共採購改革過程(包括特許權規範、新的公共事業規範以及新的電子發票規範)，改革目的為提供中小企業更多參加機會，增加更多彈性，簡化並鼓勵電子採購。Clasen女士解釋丹麥簽約方的決標條件，會採用除了價格外的等級評分方法。她強調應以決標條件客觀評量競標廠商，而非比較競標廠商間的差別。Alcoba先生則指出當政府預算吃緊，卻需要提升基礎建設網絡並挹注營運及維護經費時，民間參與公共建設機制(PPP)就扮演重要角色。他進一步強調PPP的宣傳與透明度，以及公共建設要考量公民需求的重要性。他同時也提到公部門必須了解到特權過多會降低競爭。為了要使過程更加透明，公部門必須減少競標廠商的特權，並且在招標前有良好的規劃。