GPSS Hosts Business Seminar at RSCE For Uganda Businesses to Join Global Market Place
“We would like to see an increase of Ugandan contractors doing business with the United Nations.” Said Paulin Djomo, Director Regional Service Centre Entebbe (RSCE).
These were part of his opening remarks at the UN Business Seminar hosted by the UN Global Procurement Support Section (GPSS) for Ugandan businesses looking to join the UN Global Marketplace (UNGM).
The UNGM is the procurement portal of the UN System that links the supplier community to the UN USD$14 billion annual budget for goods and services.
Representatives from 70 Ugandan businesses participated in the seminar where they were introduced to the UNGM and given an understanding on how to do business with the UN. On top of presentations from GPSS and RSCE, representatives from peacekeeping missions and funds and programmes spoke on topics ranging from Sustainable Procurement and Ethics in Procurement to Business Opportunities in UNISFA (UN Interim Security Force in Abyei) and Mission Procurement in MONUSCO (UNO Stabilization Mission in Democratic Republic of Congo).
Hon. Francis Mwebesa, Uganda Minister of Trade, Industry and Cooperatives encouraged the business community to enhance their potential to successfully do business with the UN.
“The combined purchasing power of UN organizations holds significant potential to influence the market in favor of sustainable development. Sustainable procurement practices indeed integrate requirements, specifications and criteria that are compatible and in favor of the protection of the environment, of social progress and in support of economic development, namely by seeking resource efficiency, improving the quality of products and services and ultimately optimizing costs.” He said.
Over 6,486 Uganda companies are registered with the UNGM. According to the UN procurement statistics published in 2021, the total procurement volume from Uganda was in the amount of $186.62 million making Uganda the 37 ranked supplier country.
“By registering your business in the UN global marketplace, you will introduce your products and services to many UN organizations, countries and regions. I urge you to seize this opportunity and use it to connect with the likeminded businesspeople in this room.” Said Paulin Djomo
The top procurement requirements in the UN Secretariat include items in areas of security, transport and storage, industry, industrial cleaning, building & construction among others.
“It is important for businesses to register first with the UNGM and then to regularly check the portal to see what is being procured each year and by which entity in which country and then they target accordingly.” Said Balakrishnan Amirthalingam, Chief, GPSS.
In response to a question on what volume of procurement is secure for Ugandan businesses, Mr. Amirthalingam pointed out that procurement activities of the UN system, from sourcing to execution are based on the principles of best value for money, fairness, integrity and transparency, effective international competition and the needs of the UN.
To enhance the experience at the seminar, the participants were taken through a live UNGM registration session at the end of the day.
The RSCE is the flagship Service Centre for the UN Secretariat and provides administrative, logistics and ICT services to 17 UN missions in Africa. The RSCE manages more than $5bn of UN Secretariat resources, and processes nearly 66,000 commercial vendors’ invoices.