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Some councils in Northern Ireland are to be asked to arrange and host a number of information sessions to encourage and support small local businesses to bid for more public service contracts in their locality. A Sinn Féin elected representative said “Whilst ensuring that all council tenders and contract represent good value for money, there is absolutely no reason why this value cannot be met by our smaller local traders who live, work and create employment on a very local level,” and “The importance of public procurement contracts to local businesses cannot be understated and it is vital that local firms, particularly smaller ones, are given help and advice on how to tender for public contracts and know what is required of a successful bidder.” The workshops will go through everything a local bidder might need to understand including how tenders will be advertised, the type of information sought from tenderers, the time-scales involved and how service providers can add their details to the Council’s mailing list. It is hoped these will address the currently held belief that the procurement process is too complicated and not inclusive enough.


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