Within the framework of reforms prior to World Bank financing in the form of budgetary support to Senegal, a preparatory workshop was recently held with the various stakeholders to exchange on the content and technical feasibility before their submission to the authorities.
The Public Procurement Regulatory Authority (ARMP) presented, on this occasion, the actions carried out and envisaged in accordance with the commitments of Senegal towards the World Bank.
These actions are taken in the framework of a project called "Small Business Act" and set up by Saër Niang, the Director General of ARMP.
This project aims to make public procurement a framework for improving the economic and social conditions of women and a lever for employability and the promotion of young people.
It has three components, namely training, technical support and the adoption of legislative and regulatory measures favourable to women and young people.
Senegal, in its desire to improve the socio-economic conditions of women and young people, has taken certain strong measures, including the law on the social and solidarity economy.
It is within this overall framework that this project, which aims to promote access for this segment of the population to public contracts and public-private partnerships, must be placed.
In terms of training, in 2021, ARMP trained 888 women in the field of public procurement.
They are now equipped to prepare, bid for and win contracts. Regarding young people, the Director General of ARMP plans a global training programme for 1000 graduates to give them the quality of assistant in public procurement and 1000 GIE, SMEs and young entrepreneurs.
The young assistants in public procurement trained at the Institute of Public Procurement Regulation (Irmap) are made available to the private sector and contracting authorities to assist them in the management of public procurement.
To facilitate the integration of young assistants into the private sector, ARMP has signed a partnership agreement with the Employment Directorate.
The latter has undertaken to support the private sector in paying the salaries of assistants in public procurement. Correspondence has been sent to the various employers' organisations to invite private companies to recruit these young people trained by Irmap.
With regard to regulations, measures favourable to the access of women and young people to public procurement are already taken into account in Decree 2020 No. 14-43 of 27 October 2021 on the application of the law on public-private partnership contracts.
Article 24 of the said decree specifies that in order to benefit from a preferential regime and to participate in public-private partnership contract procedures under 5 billion CFA francs, 50% of the execution and management staff must be of Senegalese or community nationality.
With regard to the promotion of women in public procurement, Article 29 of the decree provides for a 2% margin of preference applicable to companies whose majority shareholding is held by women.
In this same context, and in accordance with the commitments of Senegal to the World Bank, it is envisaged that at least 8 percent of contracts will be reserved for companies headed by women.
The contracting authorities will have to indicate in their annual report the number of contracts awarded to companies headed by women.