Ireland should strive to meet European Commission targets for e-procurement ahead of 2010, a not-for-profit supply chain body has warned in a pre-Budget submission.
GS1 Ireland’s chief executive Jim Bracken has called on Finance Minister Brian Cowen TD to seize the opportunity.
He said that in terms of supply chain management, replacing costly and insufficient paper-based trading systems currently in place between central and local government, savings of up to €120m a year could be made if the government moved to electronic ordering and invoicing.
“As a not-for-profit, neutral organisation, representing over 2,800 Irish member companies, across multiple industry sectors, we urge the minister to consider the move to e-procurement as an opportunity for a dramatic step forward for the competitiveness of the public services and the Irish economy as a whole,” Bracken said.
He urged Cowen and the Government to set out dates and strategies by which all state entities will be mandated to transact all trade electronically.
He also said the Government should establish an e-procurement board in the same manner as the Euro Changeover Board with a view to achieving 100pc procurement by 2010.
Bracken added that it was vital the Government makes the necessary taxation changes to favour electronic transactions in the economy, such as removing stamp duty from debit and credit card transactions, while at the same time increasing duties on cheques.
He also said e-procurement concepts are included in the curricula for second- and third-level studies.
By John Kennedy