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Publication Overview

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Toward Strategic Public Procurement in Latin America and the Caribbean

Key Messages

  • For public procurement to become a strategic lever for sustainable development, the entire procurement process and function of the public procurer must be redesigned. Latin American and Caribbean countries have been working together with IISD through the Inter-American Network on Government Procurement (INGP) on the transformation of public procurement from an administrative to a strategic function. 
  • This paper presents four best practices from the region on how that transformation is taking place. It discusses how procurement has been used to contract with micro, small and medium-sized enterprises in the Dominican Republic, to support family agriculture in Paraguay, to promote the triple-impact economy in Argentina, and to advance gender equality in Chile. 
  • The paper concludes with 10 key ingredients for strategic public procurement for sustainable development in the region. 

This publication builds on the Handbook for the Inter-American Network on Government Procurement (INGP): Implementing Sustainable Public Procurement in Latin America and the Caribbean (Casier et al., 2015). It aims to provide guidance to the INGP network for taking the next step on Sustainable Public Procurement.

The 10 key ingredients for strategic public procurement reform are:

  • The definition of public policy priorities as a precursor to public procurement reform
  • Evidence-based assessments to identify barriers, challenges, and interventions for reform
  • Capacity building of both procurement agencies as well as suppliers
  • The use of technology and digitization to eliminate access barriers
  • The existence of an enabling legal framework
  • Leadership by procurement agencies beyond their traditional scope of authority
  • Interagency collaboration and a multistakeholder approach
  • Understanding reform as a continuous learning process that needs to be monitored and redirected based on feedback
  • Knowledge about suppliers and their product and service offering
  • A solid internal and external communication strategy