SMEs benefit from government tenders, purchases

MUSCAT: The board of directors of the Public Authority for SMEs Development (Riyada) on Tuesday held its second meeting this year under the chairmanship of Dr Ali bin Masoud al Sunaidy, Minister of Commerce and Industry.
The board reviewed the performance indicators of the services rendered to small and medium enterprises by Riyada as well as the implementation of the decision under which government entities commit to offer tenders and purchases to small and medium enterprises.
The board hailed the 14 government establishments that have met their commitment by offering 10 per cent of tenders and purchases to small and medium enterprises that are registered with Riyada in 2018.
Dr Ahmed bin Mohsen al Ghassani, CEO of Riyada, said that the data of the government tenders and purchases for 2018 clearly shows that 14 government authorities have shown their commitment to increase support to SMEs. He added that the average tenders awarded to SMEs amounted to 2.5 per cent which is a low percentage urging all government entities to comply by the designated 10 per cent.
The percentage of tenders rendered to SMEs has risen for some government establishments which previously failed to meet their obligation after calculating the tenders provided to the sub-contractors. Data of government tenders and purchases offered to SMEs registered with Riyada in 2018 — according to information analysis of the Ministry of Commerce and Industry — revealed that 1,634 registered SMEs benefited from government tenders and purchases with a total value of RO 48.6 million. The SMEs that are holders of the Entrepreneurs Business Card constitute 70 per cent of that total, Al Ghassani said.
The data indicates that Sultan Qaboos University has awarded the most tenders to SMEs with 34.6 per cent of its total tenders and purchases awarded in 2018 followed by Riyada with 32.7 per cent, the Public Authority for Mining (27.8 per cent), Tanfeedh programme of the Ministry of Manpower (24.5 per cent) and Al Rafd Fund (24 per cent). The CEO of Riyada concluded calling upon the SMEs to register with Riyada database in order to make use of the government tenders and purchases. — ONA