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World Bank, EBRD to simplify procurement practices in Ukraine ahead of expected surge in reconstruction spending

EIB President Werner Hoyer, World Bank President Ajay Banga, EBRD President Odile Renaud-Basso and Council of Europe Development Bank Governor Carlo Monticelli. (Photo from EBRD)

The World Bank, the Council of Europe Development Bank, the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) and the European Investment Bank (EIB) agreed to streamline and simplify their procurement practices in Ukraine ahead of an expected surge in reconstruction spending.

"Reconstruction needs for Ukraine will be huge," the four multilateral development banks said in a joint announcement. "With billions being committed to Ukraine for economic support now, and much more expected when the time comes for reconstruction, keeping procedures for managing investments transparent and simple is crucial."

The banks offered few details of the planned "harmonization" of procurement practices but they did say the changes will simplify the process for Ukraine and allow the lenders to co-finance projects more easily, while ensuring transparency.

The Ukrainian government said in an announcement that a memorandum of intent signed between the four banks also approves their eventual use of ProZorro, a Ukrainian-government-sponsored online procurement portal designed to increase transparency, for use of tenders below 130,000 euros for goods and 5 million euros for works.

The government said the lenders also agreed to use Ukraine's Dream platform, which is meant to include all aspects of reconstruction, from the initial local registry of damage through to project assessment, procurement, completion and operation.  “Dream” stands for Digital Restoration Ecosystem for Accountable Management.

Dream is meant to increase transparency with an “everybody sees everything” principle and ease concerns among international lenders and foreign governments about the widespread corruption that has hobbled many past projects in Ukraine.

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