Finance Secretary Mark Drakeford will today talk about the power of procurement to shape the Welsh economy at the Procurex Wales conference.
Addressing an audience of professionals, he will talk about the need for smarter and more creative procurement to support the government’s prevention and prosperity policy agendas and to maximise the way public money is invested and spent in the future.
He will also speak about the impact the UK’s forthcoming exit from the EU will have on procurement and the wider Welsh economy.
The Finance Secretary will say:
“There was a time when procurement was just a process – an under-appreciated backroom function delivering on value for money and good governance within organisations.
“While these are as important as ever, what is better understood now is the power of procurement to deliver policy in Wales and contribute towards a more prosperous Wales.
“This type of procurement means there is a need to further develop the skills and capacity of procurement professionals in Wales. The new programme I announced in September will ensure we provide more profile and visibility for the profession – having the best people who understand the bigger picture and make the best procurement decisions for Wales’ wellbeing.”
One of the big issues which will test the power of procurement is Wales’ preparation for Brexit. Leaving the EU poses a number of challenges to Wales’ economy, public services and procurement processes, but the Cabinet Secretary will tell Procurex that Brexit is an opportunity to build on the good work already underway in Wales.
Professor Drakeford will say:
“While preparing for Brexit is understandably at the forefront of our minds, it’s important we don’t lose sight of the opportunities which could arise from the Brexit ashes.
“This is an opportunity to simplify regulations, through the development of a procurement framework; stimulate the Welsh economy with more businesses winning more Welsh public sector contracts and devolve more competencies to Wales.”
And he will add:
“We need to think of procurement as a vehicle’s engine. The vehicle won’t go anywhere without an engine. The engine won’t work without fuel. But a fine-tuned and powerful engine will take the vehicle further and more efficiently than one which is poorly serviced.
“If we are to achieve prosperity for all in Wales, we need the power of procurement under the bonnet.”