Procurement of services through government buying portal GeM (government e-marketplace), touched ₹1.82 lakh crore as of February 22, an official statement said on Friday.

It was ₹8,500 crore in 2020-21, says, Commerce Ministry.

Also read: OMCs to procure over 300 crore litres lines of ethanol annually from upcoming plants across 8 states

It added that two bids placed by South Eastern Coalfield Limited, a subsidiary of Coal India Limited, worth nearly ₹40,000 crore, have catapulted the share of service procurement this month.

GeM CEO, P K Singh said that the GeM has harnessed digital capabilities and has emerged as a one-stop-shop for procurement of all possible services that may be required by Government buyers at various levels of administration.

GeM was established in 2016 to provide government buyers an end-to-end digital platform to carry out public procurement of goods at cost-effective rates.

In 2019-20, the platform diversified its portfolio to include services as a separate segment by offering government buyers the flexibility to hire very few basic services like manpower hiring, cab hiring, security services and cleaning & sanitation services, through tools like e-bidding and reverse auction.