Public to control budget spending

MOSCOW, September 2. (Itar-Tass) — Russia’s Economic Development Ministry made public a draft law on a federal contracting system. The document was submitted to the relevant ministries for consideration and after this will be taken to the government. On Thursday, Economic Development Minister Elvira Nabiullina shared legislative innovations with journalists. Lawmakers promised to close corruption loopholes.

President Dmitry Medvedev demanded that the government should take back 1 trillion roubles from corrupt officials who “hack off” funds from state orders, Moskovsky Komsomolets wrote. The current law governing state purchasing and contracting adopted in 2005 outlived itself, as it practically sets no obstacles for state money stealing.

There are many corruption-related examples. Most “impressing” are purchases of limousines and collection furniture by governmental agencies. The head of the Ministry’s federal contracting system development department, Olga Anchishkina, noted that federal civil servants wonder why local administrations make repairs in their buildings practically every year. Last year’s purchases of computer tomographic scanners at prices that exceeded the producer’s prices multifold, probably, became the most outrageous corruption case.

Therefore the new law should build up a new contracting system. Goods and services procurement for state structures and municipalities will be planned for five years. Then a procurement schedule will be finalized on the annual basis. Moreover, all state purchases should be included in state programs that will form the basis for budgets at all levels beginning from 2013. All this data will be obligatorily placed on the Internet.

Elvira Nabiullina hopes that the law developed by her ministry and the Higher School of Economics will be adopted in late 2011 or early 2012, Nezavisimaya Gazeta wrote. It will take no less than three years to introduce a contracting system governing state purchases, but the implementation of these measures may exert a positive effect just at once, the minister said.

The Rossiyskaya Gazeta daily noted that the draft law’s quintessence is the control not only over the conclusion of contracts, but also over the whole procurement cycle – from forecasting the state and municipal needs to auditing and controlling the order fulfilment.

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