Six local companies secured a deal to supply 100 million Br worth of toner cartridges that will be distributed to 187 federal institutions.
Nanodas Trade & Industry, National Marketers, Veer General Trading, RKAD International Trading, A & S Pillar Trading, and Toner Assembly & Manufacturing are the companies that were awarded contracts on March 27, 2020. The companies will supply 60pc of the total procurement of the toner cartridges for laser printers of several different models.
For the procurement of the toner cartridges, the Public Procurement & Property Disposal Service floated a tender on August 23, 2019. A total of 14 local companies participated in the process, and 12 of them reached the technical and financial evaluation stage that was held on September 9, 2019, and January 27, 2020, respectively.
Nanodas Trade & Industry was awarded a contract to supply 99 machines for 55.2 million Br, while National Marketers Plc will provide 72 types of equipment worth 21 million Br. Veer General Trading secured a 3.4-million-Br deal to supply 11 types of toner cartridge machines.
RKAD International and A & S Pillar Trading will provide the public offices with 12 toner cartridges each, worth 7.6 million Br and 12.9 million Br, respectively. Toner Assembly & Manufacturing secured the smallest portion of the contract to supply one item of equipment worth 370,000 Br.
After awarding the contract to the six companies, the Service has also given the remaining six companies that reached the technical and financial evaluation stage and the six awardees the chance to supply additional equipment worth 66.6 million Br.
Along with the six awardees, Addis Imaging Trading, YNB Computer & Computer Accessory Importer, Zepana Trading, Alta Computer Tech Plc, Omedad Plc and Jupiter Trading Plc were given a chance to respond to the invitation until April 2, 2020. Some of the companies have responded to the Service, which is currently screening their offers.
The winning companies are expected to deliver the supplies in two months if they import the products. The delivery date will be cut by half if they supply from the local market, according to Worku Gezahegn, acting procurement director at the Service, which procured 14.7 billion Br worth of items in the last fiscal year.
The beneficiaries of the procurement will cover the full cost.
The latest contract is an extension of the procurement the Service made a month and a half ago. It awarded contracts to four local companies to supply information communication technologies (ICT) equipment worth 188 million Br. Last year, the Service bought ICT equipment for public offices and universities for 2.4 billion Br.
In the first round of procurement, a high number of copy and scanner machines are being purchased, as well as a supply of toner cartridges, according to Worku.
Under the stewardship of Tsewaye Muluneh, a former federal judge, the Service has made a couple of adjustments in the procurement process over the past couple of months. Two months ago, it cut the pre-screening process of suppliers that used to take three to seven days. The period for technical evaluation has also been reduced from two months to two weeks. Sample tests made at the Ethiopian Conformity Assessment Enterprise, which took three months, have been slashed to 20 days.
Yonas Tsegay, maintenance and support service leader at Addis Abeba University, believes that procuring ICT equipment is commendable, since universities and federal institutions are providing many services manually.
"There're problems with the scanners and copy machines at universities," he said.
Generally, when procuring ICT equipment, it should be thoroughly researched, and the awarded companies must provide the spare parts and maintenance services, according to Yonas.
"Training on how to maintain the machines should be provided to the staff of the institutions," he recommended.