Understanding the Role of the OPR
January 13th, 2024
By Paul Hadden
The journey towards effective, efficient, and transparent public procurement procedures in Trinidad and Tobago dates to pre-independence when we began to see a rise in advocacy for proper procurement procedures. Thus began the long journey towards the creation of what is known today as the Office of Procurement Regulation (OPR).
Who is the OPR?
The OPR is a corporate body established in response to the Public Procurement and Disposal of Public Property Act of 2015. The Act sought to provide for public procurement in accordance with the principles of good governance, namely: accountability, integrity, transparency, and value for money. It aims to promote local industry development, sustainable procurement, and sustainable development.
What is the vision of the OPR?
The vision of the OPR is to be “the catalyst for transformation through best practice in procurement, retention and disposal of public property.”
How does it work?
One of the main functions of the OPR is to establish a comprehensive database of information on public procurement, including information on tenders received, the award and value of contracts, and other such information as the Office thinks fit.
What are the benefits of establishing the OPR? What is its intended impact?
Procurement law ensures that the government’s business practices are effective and efficient, held accountable to international best practices, and that government contracts are awarded fairly and in compliance with all relevant laws and regulations. Public procurement is one of the government’s activities that is most vulnerable to corruption. The implementation of a rigorous public procurement regime is, therefore, one of the most effective ways to foster accountability and combat corruption.
What are the opportunities for businesses?
Suppliers/contractors who are registered on the Procurement Depository will now have their information visible to over 300 public bodies. This creates an opportunity to expand their reach to engage with public bodies with whom they may not have previously done business. There are also no fees associated with registration on the Procurement Depository.
What resources are available to the private sector?
The OPR’s website, https://oprtt.org/, has a wealth of information on various aspects of the OPR’s function and also provides several portals, one of which is the Procurement Depository https://oprtt.org/procurement-depository/. Additionally, users can contact the Office with queries via e-mail, [email protected], or call 226-4OPR or 627-4OPR.
How to register?
Suppliers/contractors will need to register their lines of business on the Procurement Depository. In order to do this, interested parties need to visit the Depository page at https://depository.oprtt.org. The supplier/contractor would then be guided to submit information in order to create a supplier profile. Following this, they will have to log in to the system to create a supplier record and publish it.