Procurement is a key element of the Government’s Public Service Reform agenda and is a very significant portion of overall spending. The State buys everything from pens and paper, through to ammunition and surgical equipment. In fact, we spend €8.5bn every year on goods and services. In this context, it is essential that the Public Service operates in a co-ordinated and efficient way and delivers sustainable savings for the taxpayer. That is why we established the Office of Government Procurement (OGP).
The OGP commenced operations in 2014 and, together with four key sectors (Health, Defence, Education and Local Government), has responsibility for sourcing all goods and services on behalf of the Public Service. In addition, the OGP also has responsibility for procurement policy and procedures.
Through the OGP and the sector-retained procurement functions, the Public Service speaks with "one voice" to the market for each category of expenditure, eliminating duplication and taking advantage of the scale of public procurement to best effect. This move is in line with best practice in the public and private sector and is part of the continuing reform programme being driven by the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform.