Chibwe Mwelwa, President, Zambia Institute of Purchasing & Supply (ZIPS), speaking at the Smart Procurement World Indaba, which took place in Johannesburg last month.

Given the substantive role that procurement plays in public financial management, and in light of its impact on the wider public sector objectives including sustainability and socio-economic objectives; the need for each country to develop and implement workable strategies is essential.

Only through collaborative action plans can organisations mitigate the challenges and weaknesses identified with public procurement reforms and look to driving forward economy, efficiency, effectiveness and equity. This kind of reform requires sustained country ownership and political commitment together with appropriate technical solutions.

It is with this objective that we, the Zambia Institute of Purchasing and Supply (ZIPS) in conjunction with our partners, the Malawi Institute for Procurement and Supply (MIPS), the Procurement Regulatory Authority of Zimbabwe (PRAZ), the Zambia Association of Manufacturers (ZAM) and Commerce Edge of South Africa, welcome the first of a kind in the region, the Africa Procurement & Enterprise Development Summit that is to take place on 21- 23 November at the Mulungushi Conference Centre, Lusaka, Zambia.

In this joint statement the partners believe that such an initiative resulting in a combination of their respective conferences will create an event of scale and impact for the region.

In line with the African Development Bank and World Bank agenda, the conference will focus on Harnessing Procurement for Socio-Economic Growth. The stakeholders of the platform recognise the imperative and urgent need for a much more accelerated growth in public procurement reforms.

“Partnering with the Africa Procurement & Enterprise Development Summit, the Zambia Institute of Purchasing and Supply (ZIPS) aims to facilitate knowledge transfer in the region/member countries,” states ZIPS President, Chibwe Mwelwa. He further stated that ZIPS was honoured that Zambia was selected to host this historic landmark summit.

This conference and summit will be the first step to establishing a sustainable network for Africa’s public and private sector purchasing institutions and practitioners supported by international, regional and sub regional networks.

“This event creates the perfect platform to facilitate these important objectives through the coming together of key stakeholders. The summit will not be just another talk shop but rather a place where a comprehensive collaborative development plan and strategy for SME growth will be facilitated and meaningful market access provided for such SME’s.” Debbie Tagg, COO, Smart Procurement.

Gladys Mwale, Chief Executive Officer, MIPS reiterates that, “in collaborating with the Africa Procurement & Enterprise Development Summit, the Malawi Institute of Purchasing Supply (MIPS) aims to promote professionalism in procurement and supply chain management through like conferences, seminars, meetings and other related matters”.

Guest of Honour is His Excellency President Mr Edgar Chagwa Lungu and invited are His Excellency the President of Malawi, HE Peter Mutharika and Zimbabwe, HE Emmerson Mnangagwa.

The summit welcomes the selection of stakeholders attending from Ministries, Procurement Oversight Authorities, procuring entities, private sector, entrepreneurial organisations, small business, trade organisations and procurement practitioners in both the public and private sectors.

For more information on the Africa Procurement & Enterprise Development Summit, please visit the website at www.africaprocurementsummit.com.