The Government eMarketplace (GeM) is going a whole hog on increasing the participation of state governments in the public procurement platform by roping in more and more state government departments and state PSUs.

Started in 2016,  GeM is the government’s e-commerce portal dedicated for procurement of goods and services by central and state governments, various central ministries, government organisations / departments and public sector undertakings (PSUs). 

Acheivements

The platform recently crossed the milestone of over 50 lakh sellers & service providers besides 62,000 plus buyer organisations, more than 10,000 product and 290 service categories. GeM achieved a gross merchandise value (GMV) of ₹2.94-lakh crore in the last six year. In FY22, alone the platform recorded ₹1.06 lakh crore in GMV. 

“Of the ₹1.06 lakh crore GMV, only 30 per cent or about ₹30,000 crore came from the state governments while it has the potential to reach 10X of this volume. So, we are taking all efforts to achieve that,” Prashant Kumar Singh, CEO, Government’s e-Marketplace (GeM), told BusinessLine

“For instance, Uttar Pradesh clocked about ₹11,000 crore of GMV on the platform but their procurement size is about ₹80,000-90,000 crore. Similarly, Tamil Nadu is doing around ₹1,000 crore of transactions on the platform while it has potential to do several thousand crores,” he added. 

Targets

For FY23, GeM has set a target of over ₹2-lakh crore in GMV. “It is very much achievable because the acceptability (for the platform) is increasing fast among the Central Public Sector Enterprises (CPSEs). We are making concerted efforts to reach out to various state governments, which we couldn’t do in the last two years due to the Covid-19 pandemic,” Singh said. 

GeM has prioritised 11 states including Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, Tamil Nadu, Telangana, Maharashtra, Assam and Gujarat etc to increase their share of procurement through GeM portal. 

“Of the 11 states, we will focus on five states and have engaged a consultant for the remaining six states. The consultant will station in these states, see their procurement patterns, sit with government departments and show them benefits of transacating on GeM portal by providing comparative analysis for each of their purchases,” Singh explained. 

e-procurement systems

He explained that although some states in south India already have e-procurement policy for more than a decade, they are finding it difficult to migrate to GeM due to issues with their legacy e-procurement systems. 

GeM also partnered with Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) and other associations to spread awareness about the platform among sellers and service providers, especially the MSMEs. “For instance, MSMEs in Tamil Nadu got orders worth ₹3,200 crore from outside the state but within the state they got only ₹230 crore,” Singh noted. 

Amendments

The Union government has amended the General Financial Rules 2017 (GFR) and made a provision under Rule 149 for making it mandatory to procure Goods and Services through GeM. However, procurement through GeM is not mandatory for state governments and are done through voluntary MoUs. 

“We enter into voluntary MOUs. Some states have gone ahead, some are catching up while some are in their infancy,” Singh said. 

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