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Friday, 04 Sep 2020
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E-Market opportunities for MSME in government

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The CII Andhra Pradesh held an online session on new E-Market opportunities for MSME in the government, “E-Marketing Place: Connecting Business Globally”. The Government e Marketplace (GeM) is the national public procurement portal for government organisations for procurement of goods & services. 
The speakers at the session were Sheik Nizamuddeen, GeM, Andhra Pradesh, Andaman & Nicobar, and Anuj Kumar, Director, GeM & State Nodal Officer, Andhra Pradesh
GeM is a one-stop portal for all government buyers including the Central and state ministers, departments and PSUs. The portal was launched on 9 August 2016. It aims to provide efficiency, transparency, inclusiveness in public procurement. It provides the tools of eBidding, Reverse Auction and Direct Procurement to facilitate government users. 
The portal has 4,51,584 sellers and service providers, 46,286 buyers and 21,94,437 products. The GeM transaction has 44,31,081 total number of orders with a gross merchandise value of Rs 59,994 crore. 
It provides benefit for sellers such as one-stop for bids/reverse auction on products/services; dynamic pricing i.e. price can be changed based on market condition, vendor rating system; new product suggestion facility available to sellers; monitoring of supplies and payment; new on GeM showcases list of new product category added in the portal. 
GeM is a single window for procuring all general goods and services. The portal offers real time and historical data for reporting, decision making and policy feedback. The real time multi-channel sources deal to facilitate decision making. 
The portal offers multiple procurement options such as direct purchases for amount less than Rs 25,000; details of L1 bidders for amount more than Rs 25,000 and less than Rs five lakh; intent of buying –PAC for procurement of a specific product as per requirement is also possible. Moreover, procurement via Bid/RA to get the best price quote bids to RA option is also available after evaluation of the bid. 
The benefits extended to MSMEs include tender sets free of cost, exempt from Earnest Money (EMD), purchase preferences of minimum 25 percent to MSEs with the lowest (L1) bidder. Moreover, 358 items are exclusively reserved for MSEs.
All the sellers claiming to be MSE are required to validate their MSE status through Udyog Aadhar. The micro and small enterprises are exempted from EMD, if MSE is a manufacturer of primary product category or service provider of primary service category and gives specific confirmation to this effect at the time of bid submission and whose credentials are validated online through Udyog Adhaar and through uploaded supporting documents. MSE is registered with NSIC and DIC for primary product category whose credentials are validated through NSIC/ DIC database and through uploaded supporting documents.
The MSEs are also exempted from EMD, provided the buyer has been given the option to exempt the MSEs from turnover and past experience criteria at the time of creation of the bid as provided for in PPP-MSE order. Further, suitable ATC clauses are already enabled for ensuring compliance of PPP-MSE orders. 
For order splitting in terms of provision of MSEs and PPP-MII orders, the bidder is required to upload the necessary documents to prove their eligibility for a particular category of benefit; the buyer evaluates the document and indicates whether the bidder is eligible for EMD exemption and/or purchase preferences as an MSE. 
In the case of purchase preference for MSE, the buyer gets an online option to ask the MSE within 15 percent of L1 to match L1 price and generate split orders. 
In GeM portal for values of up to Rs 25,000, buyers may place orders based on seller offered price as in private e-commerce portals. For a value of up to Rs 5,00,000, the buyer will compare the best offers among minimum three different OEM sellers and the lowest offer will be placed orders. On receipts of direct and L1 order, the seller will get five days to accept the orders. Also, if the order is not accepted, the same will be affecting the sellers grading in the portal. The bid statistics will display the bid value and volume of the bids participated, won and lost. 
GeM 4.0 portal offers technology roadmap involving Analytics, Hyper Ledger with smart contracts using blockchain technology, Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning and Deep Learning. It offers NLP-based search engine, dedicated corner for CPSEs and large buyers.
In this new feature, a detailed list of product categories is made available in downloadable PDF format for easy category search. Seller can now directly search from a particular product that has been uploaded using a Product ID or Catalog ID. GeM also enables crowd-sourcing of categories, and sellers can now suggest new categories. 
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