July 5, 2021
Mairéad Farrell TD welcomes Stormont’s announcement of new social value procurement policy

Sinn Féin spokesperson on Public Expenditure & Reform, Mairéad Farrell TD, has welcomed Stormont Finance Minister Conor Murphy’s announcement of a new policy for public procurement contracts, that puts an emphasis on social value. 

The new policy will help create jobs in disadvantaged areas and deliver environmental benefits by requiring contracts to employ low or zero carbon practices.

The Executive spends around £3bn annually procuring goods, services and capital works, but from next June they must include a minimum of 10% of total award criteria to social value. In addition, there will be a requirement for contractors to pay the living wage for contracts above a certain threshold.

Teachta Farrell said:

‘I am delighted to see the Executive take such a progressive step in terms of their approach to public procurement spending. 

“The North has undoubtedly set an example for the South to follow, when it comes to the creation of social value through public spending.

“The example of the North, as well as what has already been achieved in Scotland and places like Preston in England, show clearly that when the state takes a coordinated approach to spending and tries to use that spending power to achieve policy objectives, then great progress can be made. 

“Positive impacts can include higher labour and environmental standards, promoting marginalised groups’ participation in the labour force, increasing the participation of SMEs and building community wealth. 

“The work by the Executive mirrors that of my own, and I will be shortly launching my own procurement policy and approach to creating social value in public procurement in the South.”

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