Radio 4 tonight on public sector procurement

OK, I messed up on the date! Many apologies, it was in fact last night - but you can listen again here, which is what I will be doing later!

The BBC Radio 4 File on Four programme today (Wednesday) at 8pm features issues around public procurement and the wider economy – is public procurement biased against UK firms as Francis Maude has claimed in the past? Is the Government doing enough to support smaller firms? Do EU regulations give public procurement scope to take into account social issues, and do contracting authorities take full advantage of what they could be doing?

As regular readers will know, these issues are complex and we've looked at them in some detail ever since we first started publishing.

I gave the File on Four team some input on the issues involved here, although I'm not on the programme. I tried to be balanced – for instance, I said that this government is doing more around the SME agenda than any previous government.

That doesn’t mean it's all working or couldn’t be improved, but I hope the positives do come over in the programme as well as (no doubt) some of the issues. And expect to hear a fair bit about the Forth bridge and the Bombardier / Siemens contract decisions.

Voices (3)

  1. Paul Wright:

    Also available on itunes. Am off to have a listen.

  2. Peter Smith:

    Thanks Furlong…Sorry for dodgy scheduling information! I’ll have a listen later.
    What is particularly ironic about the Wales stuff (and we have said before how much good work they’re doing) is that two of the architects of it – Martin Sykes and Sue Hurrell – are ex OGC people! There’s been contact between Wales and OGC over the years but we’re seeing a consequence of the loss of corporate memory I guess with so many OGC people going..

  3. Final Furlong:

    I listened to the programme last night….tonight must be a replay.

    You’ll hear Minister Maude having a major ‘wobble’ when pressed about the ‘socio-ecomomic’ procurement initiatives delivered in Wales. He had to acknowledge that he knew nothing about them. (He continues to suffer from poor advice and support…)

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