(IBLF Russia)




The 2nd International Conference Moscow Contractual System: Government and Business against Corruption

On the 10th of December, 2014, the 2nd International Conference “Moscow Contractual System: Government and Business against Corruption” organised by the Moscow Government (Department for Competition Policy) and IBLF Russia, was held in Moscow. The Conference was timed with the UN International Anticorruption Day set up on the 9th of December, 2003 by the United Nations General Assembly, on the day of signature of the UN Convention Against Corruption.

The 2nd International Conference Moscow Contractual System: Government and Business against Corruption summarized the implementation of the decisions took on the International Conference Practices and Key Areas in Combatting Corruption in Public Procurement, that took place on the 9th of December, 2013, in Moscow, and continued the dialog between business, academic community and the Moscow Government with the view of curbing fraudulent activities in public procurement.

Over 700 experts took part at the event, including government officials, international organisations, Russian and multinational companies operating in various sectors of economy and non-governmental organisations.

The key topics of the Conference in 2014 comprised improvement of public procurement, innovative approaches to anticorruption actions in public procurement, evaluation of the first year results following introduction of contractual system, ensuring security and transparency of the public procurement procedures and others. The key speakers were Natalia Sergunina, Deputy Mayor of Moscow for Economic Policy and Property and Land Relations, Gennady Degtev, Head of Department for Competition Policy, Moscow Government, Sergey Katyrin, President of the Chamber of Industry and Commerce of the Russian Federation, Roman Artyukhin, Head of the Federal Treasury, Federica Saliola, Special Programmes Manager, World Bank, John Davies, Head of the OECD Competition Division.

Boris Tkachenko, Head of IBLF Russia, as co-moderator of plenary session, managed an informative discussion between experts who shared their different and sometimes opposing opinions.

Representatives of regulatory authorities delivered detailed report on the anticorruption measures in public procurement implemented by governmental agencies.

Federica Saliola told about initial results of the World Bank Public Procurement Systems Comparison research. Moscow was on the list of initial 11 capitals to carry out the research on practices and regulation in public procurement among business experts and public officials in 2014. The World Bank Public Procurement Systems Comparison research is being carried out in response to G20 Anticorruption Group since 2014, aimed to evaluate transaction costs in connection with processes and regulation of public procurement. The implementation of the World Bank research in Moscow was supported by the Moscow City Department for Competition Policy and IBLF Russia.

John Davies, OECD, presented profound economic analysis of the negative effect of the public procurement players’ fraudulent behaviour. He has paid special attention to protective measures against fraudulent behaviour and corruption in public procurement worked out by OECD with involvement of regulators from different countries.

The practical instruments for prevention of corruption and increasing transparency in public procurement were proposed by the representatives of international and Russian companies, including GE, Siemens, the Bank of Moscow.

Such multipolar evaluation of the complex task of ensuring transparency and honesty of public procurement and open dialog of business, government and non-governmental and international organisations allowed to touch upon the subject of working out new comprehensive anticorruption solutions and measures that were recorded in the Memorandum of the Conference.

The latter comprised the set of practical steps, in particular as proposed by Boris Tkachenko, Head of IBLF Russia during his brief speech:

We believe that the following collective actions of business and government can aid the reduction of corruption risks in public procurement in short term: development of new forms of public-private partnership, establishing market price list of goods, works and services with clear detailing per classes of products and commercial qualities to eliminate unfair dumping bids, and, leveraging the resources of industry manufacturing groups, to establish the set of uniform criteria database of types and sub-types of products in order to reduce the risk of discrimination against auction players.

We believe it is important to develop effective mechanisms of interaction between business and government and to continue widening our successful cooperation with the Moscow Government aimed at strengthening the culture of zero tolerance to corruption through exchange of experience and opinion between representatives of business and government.

Only joint efforts of business, government and society can effectively prevent corruption and increase transparency in public procurement.

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