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Government e-Marketplace

Government e-Marketplace

Why in news?

  • The Government e-Marketplace (GeM) system has resulted in a 10% savings in public procurement costs in five years, but has still tapped only 5% of India’s total government purchases of about Rs 20 lakh crore a year.
  • 56% of the order value processed through the GeM portal has been delivered by Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs), with seven lakh small firms on board.

About

  • GeM is a one-stop National Public Procurement Portal to facilitate online procurement of common use Goods & Services required by various Central and State Government Departments/Organizations/Public Sector Undertakings (PSUs).
  • The procurement of goods and services by Ministries and the Central Public Sector Enterprises (CPSEs) is mandatory for goods and services available on GeM.
  • It also provides the tools of e-bidding and reverse e-auction to facilitate the government users achieve the best value for their money.
  • At present, GeM has more than 30 lakh products, over Rs. 10 lakh crore worth of transactions have happened so far at the portal.

GeM 4.0

  • GeM 4.0 is the latest version of the e-marketplace. It adds on to the features that were already in place in the third edition of GeM. Some of the new features include the following:
  • Sellers will get timely payment.
  • Natural Language Processing (NLP) based advanced search engine.                                    Government e-Marketplace
  • Demand aggregation wherein buyers can collate several orders of the same product for different consignees across many organisations within one ministry.
  • The user interface has been revamped and made more user-friendly.
  • Staggered or flexible delivery is allowed.
  • The bidding module has been redesigned and now consignee-wise and item-wise bidding is permitted.
  • Advanced analytics, machine learning, deep learning and AI are integrated into the portal.
  • The grievance redressal mechanism has been improved.
  • Cataloguing has been made simpler for sellers by introducing price variance.
  • Ease of Payment options with integration with many banks and ERPs.
  • Seller rating is now introduced making it easier for buyers to make their decisions, and also incentivising sellers to upgrade.
  • Many new services and categories have been included.
  • Now, sellers and buyers can interact with each other thus offering scope for improvement and a better understanding of the market.
  • This version has dedicated pages for CPSUs (central PSUs).                                                      Government e-Marketplace

Advantages for Buyers

  • Offers rich listing of products for individual categories of Goods/Services
  • Makes available search, compare, select and buy facility
  • Enables buying Goods and Services online, as and when required.
  • Provides transparency and ease of buying
  • Ensures continuous vendor rating system
  • Up-to-date user-friendly dashboard for buying, monitoring supplies and payments
  • Provision of easy return policy.                                                                  Government e-Marketplace

Advantages for Sellers

  • Direct access to all Government departments.
  • One-stop shop for marketing with minimal efforts
  • One-stop shop for bids / reverse auction on products / services
  • New Product Suggestion facility available to Sellers
  • Dynamic pricing: Price can be changed based on market conditions
  • Seller friendly dashboard for selling, and monitoring of supplies and payments
  • Consistent and uniform purchase procedures

Challenges 

  • Multiple Portals: There are multiple portals in Central government departments, such as the defence procurement portal, and the Indian Railways e-Procurement System, which could limit GeM’s effort to achieve its mandate as the National Public Procurement Portal and provide the benefit of economies of scale and efficiency.
  • Lack of Compliance: It also faces a bit of a challenge in getting all Central organisations to comply with Rule 149 of the General Financial Rules (GFR) 2017, which mandates that all common-use goods and services that are available on the GeM portal should necessarily be procured on the platform.

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Mussoorie Times

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