The Ministry of Commerce & Industry on Tuesday announced that Government e-Marketplace (GeM), a procurement portal for the government departments, has made it mandatory for sellers to enter the ‘Country of Origin’ while registering all new products on the GeM platform.
In a press release, the ministry said this significant step was taken to promote Make in India and ‘Aatmanirbhar Bharat’.
Sellers, who had already uploaded their products before the introduction of this new feature on GeM, are being reminded regularly to update the Country of Origin, with a warning that their products shall be removed from GeM if they fail to update the same.
GeM has also enabled a provision for indication of the percentage of local content in products. With this new feature, now, the Country of Origin as well as the local content percentage are visible in the marketplace for all items. More importantly, the ‘Make in India’ filter has now been enabled on the portal. Buyers can choose to buy only those products that meet the minimum 50% local content criteria.
In case of Bids, Buyers can now reserve any bid for Class I Local suppliers (Local Content > 50%). For those Bids below Rs.200 crore, only Class I and Class II Local Suppliers (Local content > 50% and > 20% respectively) are eligible to bid, with Class I suppliers getting purchase preference, the release said.
The online marketplace has facilitated entry of small local sellers in Public Procurement, while implementing ‘Make in India’ and MSE Purchase Preference Policies of the Government in the true sense. The purchases through GeM by Government users have been authorised and made mandatory by the Ministry of Finance by adding a new Rule No. 149 in the General Financial Rules, 2017, it added.
GeM was launched in August 2016 for online purchase of goods and services by all the Central government ministries and departments. The portal has more than 18.35 lakh products from 3.95 lakh sellers and services providers. It has so far processed transactions worth Rs. 55,048 crore.
The portal has a wide range of products from office stationary to automobiles and services ranging from transportation, logistics to annual maintenance contracts (AMCs) for categories of services.