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Parliamentary Replies

Condition for Tender Specifications

14 Apr 2014

Date: 14 April 2014

Parliamentary Question by Mr Teo Siong Seng:

To ask the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Finance whether the Government can include partnership with local companies as a condition in the tender specifications of key infrastructure projects so that these local companies can build up necessary expertise and track records to help them secure a foothold in overseas projects.

Reply by DPM and Finance Minister Tharman Shanmugaratnam:

Singapore is a signatory to the World Trade Organisation (WTO) Agreement on Government Procurement and a number of Free Trade Agreements.  For procurement covered by these agreements, signatories are not allowed to attach conditions requiring tenderers to partner local companies.  This applies to Singapore as well.

To help Singapore companies take part in Government procurement, our focus has been and continues to be on strengthening their capabilities and competitiveness, and improving their productivity. For example, to strengthen local capabilities in construction and help local firms  build track record, the Building and Construction Authority (BCA) topped up the $250-million Construction Productivity and Capability Fund with $30 million.
Where there are synergies in working together for overseas projects, Singapore companies can work as a group and leverage IE Singapore’s Global Company Partnership framework that allows them to undertake projects jointly and to share costs. For example, companies can engage consultants to conduct feasibility studies or to prepare bids for an overseas project, with IE funding up to 50% of eligible costs.

In addition, the Government has also initiated the establishment of Clifford Capital, which provides financing support to Singapore-based companies participating in overseas infrastructure projects.