Building capacity for women entrepreneurs to participate in UNDP Procurement process

Aug 4, 2017

UNDP Tanzania recently conducted a training for women entrepreneurs aimed at increasing women owned/managed business participation in United Nations Procurements.

The purpose of the workshop was to

  1. Educate women entrepreneurs on UNDP’s procurement procedures, 
  2. Advance gender equality and women empowerment through public procurement, 
  3. Engage more women in public procurement and 
  4. Assist women owned businesses to be registered with the UNDP local vendor roster.

UNDP Deputy Country Director for Operations, Mr. Yahya Ba said that the training was designed as part of the Country Office’s Gender Equality Strategy 2016-2021 which seeks to advance gender equality and to increase partnership with the private sector, including women-lead businesses through all of UNDP’s operations, including procurement.

In his remarks, Mr. Ba said that

The goal of gender equality is a society in which women and men enjoy the same opportunities, rights and obligations in all spheres of life and a critical aspect of promoting gender equality is the empowerment of women

He highlighted that involving women more in the procurement process can contribute to gender equality and empowerment. Mr. Ba acknowledged the important role of women in achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), saying that without gender equality the goals cannot be achieved.

Mr. Bazil James, Procurement Analyst, began the training by presenting the principles of UNDP procurement, highlighting that at the core of its mandate is

  1. Best Value for Money
  2. Fairness, Integrity and Transparency and 
  3. Effective International Competition,

While providing equal treatment for all vendors. He outlined the procurement process, what goods and services UNDP normally procures and the steps to completing the process.

Mr. James said that the purpose of the training was to encourage more local women entrepreneurs to apply as vendors for UNDP goods and services and recommended those that are new or unfamiliar with the process to start by registering, through pre-qualification, as vendors for micro-purchases, which are goods or services valued below $5000.

He hoped that as an outcome of training, future UNDP requests for supplying goods and services, will see more applications from women-lead organisations. He reaffirmed UNDP Tanzania’s commitment to gender-sensitive procurement processes and recognized the impact such will have on achieving gender equality and ultimately the seventeen SDGs.

The training was attended by over fifty local women entrepreneurs including management from the Tanzania Women Chamber of Commerce (TWCC). Ms. Dina Bina, Director of TWCC, said that

The training was highly-informative and encouraged UNDP to conduct similar trainings for all members of the Chamber, which is currently over two hundred.

She was pleased that the micro-purchasing options can be used as a means of engaging with UNDP before larger procurements could be done saying the workshop was “an eye opener for Tanzanian women entrepreneurs to the UNDP engendered procurement system”. She also thanked UNDP for organizing the

tailormade workshop” hoping that it would open “new horizons for Tanzanian Women entrepreneurs to UNDP opportunities.

UNDP Tanzania was recently awarded the 2016 Silver Gender Equality Seal by the UNDP Bureau of Policy and Programme Support (BPPS). It was presented in recognition of the Country Office’s leading role in promoting gender equality and in supporting government to achieve gender equality to advance the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

This training was organized and facilitated by UNDP Tanzania’s Procurement Services Unit (PSU) with support from the Country Office Gender Focal Team. 

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