Trillions of dollars are spent each year buying goods and services for public projects. From schools and hospitals, to power plants and dams, this means big budgets and complex plans. It also means ideal opportunities for corruption.
Contracts to suppliers can be awarded without fair competition. This allows companies with political connections to triumph over their rivals. Or companies within the same industry can rig their bids, so each gets a piece of the pie. This increases the cost of services to the public. We’ve found that corruption can add as much as 50 per cent to a project’s costs.
But corruption in public procurement isn’t just about money. It also reduces the quality of work or services. And it can cost lives. People in many countries have paid a terrible personal price for collapsed buildings and counterfeit medicines. The end result? Our trust in our leaders is eroded. The solution?