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Rs 130 bn tenders withdrawn or cancelled to promote Make in India products

New Delhi :Government tenders worth about Rs 130 billion were either cancelled or withdrawn and re-issued after the Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP) stepped in to change their conditions for promoting ‘made in India’ goods, a top official said.

“The DIPP is taking every step for effective implementation of public procurement order, 2017, to promote ‘made in India’ products,” the government official said.

The government issued the order on June 15, 2017, to promote manufacturing and production of goods and services in India and enhance income and employment in the country.

A tender worth Rs 8,000 was withdrawn and re-issued with modified conditions after the intervention of the DIPP. The project was related with setting up of a urea and ammonia plant for gasification.

Similarly, a tender for procurement of train set coaches was cancelled as the tender has certain restrictive conditions which were discriminatory against domestic manufacturers and favoured foreign players. The project cost was Rs 50 billion.

The move assumes significance as in March Prime Minister Narendra Modi expressed concerns at the restrictive and discriminatory clauses being imposed against domestic manufacturers and suppliers in tender documents for public procurement.

The department is holding series of meetings with all the concerned departments and ministries including steel, railways, defence, oil and gas, pharmaceutical, electronics, telecommunications, heavy industries, textiles, shipping and power in this regard.

“Directions were given to ensure strict compliance of the order in letter and spirit. All nodal ministries were directed to ensure notification of local content,” the official added.

The DIPP has asked for immediately issuance of guidelines and notifications relating to declarations of items with sufficient local capacity, domestic content.

Under the Public Procurement (Preference to Make in India) Order, it was envisaged that all central government departments, their attached or subordinate offices and autonomous bodies controlled by the Government of India should ensure purchase preference be given to domestic suppliers in government procurement.

It also provides 20 per cent margin of purchase preference, while the minimum local content required shall ordinarily be 50 per cent.

Recently, Central Vigilance Commission issued directives to all central vigilance officers to exercise oversight on all contracts of over Rs 5 crore to ensure that restrictive and discriminatory clauses against domestic suppliers are not included in the tender documents for public procurement by central government agencies and that the tender conditions are in sync with the order.

Further the official said that any grievance related to the issue will be taken care by the standing committee on implementation of this order. It is chaired by DIPP Secretary Ramesh Abhishek.

Several departments and ministries including pharmaceuticals and defence production have already identified number of items for declaring domestic content.

The department of defence production have identified as many as 90 such items and they will be notifying the domestic content for these products soon. Similarly, department of pharma will be notifying the norms for four major categories including consumables, implants.