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The Court of Accounts presented two audit reports to the Public Finance Control Committee for examination

  • 27.04.2021
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The Court of Accounts of the Republic of Moldova (CoARM) presented today, April 27, within the meeting of the Parliamentary Public Finances Control Committee (PFCC), the Compliance Audit Report on Public Procurement within the Ministry of Education, Culture and Research (MECR) and some entities as well as the Report on the Compliance Audit of the Organization, Implementation and Supervision of Public-Private Partnerships (PPPs) in the field of health, both approved in December 2020.

The main conclusions and findings of the Public Procurement Compliance Report within the MECR were presented by Eduard Moroșan, Member of the CoA and Ion Pleșca, Head of the audit team.

In 2019, the value of acquisitions in the consolidated budget of MECR, estimated, amounted to 874.4 million lei. The evaluation of the public procurement process stated non-compliances at the stages of estimation and planning, in the actual process of procurement, awarding, execution and monitoring of procurement contracts.

Contracts awarded through public procurement procedures have risen steadily. In 2019, through public procurement procedures, 159 contracts were awarded with a total value of 753.1 million lei, compared to 412 contracts with a total value of 920.9 million lei, reported in 2018. At 01.12.2020, the value of the awarded contracts constituted 458.1 million lei or 61% of the 2019 index, as a result of the increase of the thresholds and the exclusion from the competitive process of the low value acquisitions.

The entities neglected to ensure transparency at the procurement planning stage, they did not ensure the conformity assessment of the priority needs of goods, works and services, based on real calculations and analyzes, which inevitably conditions deficiencies for the subsequent stages.

Eduard Moroșan concluded that the deadline for removing all deficiencies expires in June 2021, respectively the Court of Accounts will be informed by the MECR regarding the implementation of the submitted recommendations. According to the CoA’s Member, the detected irregularities determine the need to adopt stringent measures to adjust the regulatory framework related to the field of public procurement.

 

 

Concerning the Compliance Audit Report of the organization, implementation and supervision of PPPs in the field of health, Marina Covali, Member of the CoA and Irina Pîntea, responsible for ensuring and controlling the quality of the audit, presented the main conclusions of the report.

Public-private partnerships in the field of health have been initiated in order to increase citizens' access to dialysis, diagnosis, laboratory, medical imaging and radiology services, in particular to cover the needs of medical services at national level.

It is noted that, during 2011-2019, in the field of health, 16 PPP contracts were concluded, of which 7 contracts are in progress, 7 contracts were terminated, and 2 contracts were not initiated and implemented.

The audit assessments established that, although PPPs have an impact on the health services provided to citizens, the achievement of objectives at all stages of implementation has been affected by the functionality of the institutional system. Also, the regulatory framework does not have exhaustive provisions on the responsibilities and obligations of the parties involved in the proper conduct of this process.

The Court of Accounts found that the initiation of public-private partnerships through the elaboration of feasibility studies was carried out in the absence of evaluation by public partners of priority elements that would demonstrate the technical, economic and financial viability of the projects in relation to the established objectives.

The process of organizing and conducting the selection phase of private partners for the provision of medical services was accompanied by non-compliances and uncertainties regarding the transparency of the tender evaluation stage, in particular demonstrating the compliance of the criteria submitted by the successful tenderers.

The evaluation of the execution of public-private partnership contracts in the field of health shows that, although some objectives were met regarding the coverage of the needs for medical services, this process was affected by non-compliances admitted by the partners. Also, in some cases the contractual conditions are imprecise and to the detriment of the public partners, the non-compliance with the contractual obligations persists, which determines the non-obtaining of the possible revenues from the royalty in the amount of 6.1 million lei.

Thus, the public partners did not exhaustively stipulate in the respective contracts the terms, the value of the investments, the way of determining the value of the investments made and their recovered value by the private partner.

In terms of contract monitoring, the public partners did not have sufficient institutional capacity, which did not allow the impact of the PPP’s implementation to be assessed and their purpose achieved, in particular on the population's access to priority health services.

In these circumstances, the CoA found that the functionality of the public-private partnership system is affected by the non-compliance of the actions of evaluation, monitoring, evidence and reporting of PPP contracts, which did not contribute to the full achievement of the proposed objectives.

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