Lawmakers yesterday approved amendments to the Government Procurement Act (政府採購法), including a provision that says government agencies should adopt restrictive bidding in procurement plans concerning national security.
If necessary, the central governing agency of the act should consult agencies that have proposed a procurement plan concerning national security about a qualification check and review criteria for overseas and local bidders, the amendment says.
The act is currently enforced by the Public Construction Commission, which the Executive Yuan has proposed merging with the National Development Council.
The rules for the qualification review and restrictions should then be published by the commission, the amendment says.
This would prevent foreign entities that have never invested in the nation from participating in bids pertaining to national security — including information security — which is usually the result of insufficient communication between the procuring agency and the Ministry of Economic Affairs’ Investment Commission, said Democratic Progressive Party Legislator Lin Chun-hsien (林俊憲), who sponsored the amendment.
The Investment Commission could be oblivious as to whether a first-time foreign bidder is backed by Chinese funds, as there are no records of investment in Taiwan, he said.
The amendments also seek to reinforce safeguards for government procurement plans against improper benefits and contractors failing to perform the work or deliver products as promised.
The amended act stipulates that government agencies that have proposed large procurement plans — defined as those that would cost in excess of NT$200 million (US$6.47 million) — establish a procurement operations and review panel.
The panel would be responsible for reviewing procurement costs, strategies and paperwork for soliciting tenders, as well as providing consultation for a procurement plan, it says.
Civil servants must not be involved in a procurement plan that could profit their relatives within two degrees of consanguinity, it says, adding that agency heads should stop personnel who have failed to avoid a conflict of interest from overseeing a procurement plan and put others in charge.
To avoid cutthroat price competition that could result in agencies receiving substandard products or services, the amended act stipulates that agencies should in principle accept the most economically advantageous tender — rather than the lowest tender — for technical, information, social welfare, and cultural and innovative services.
The tender bond paid by a project owner is to be confiscated if they are found to have submitted untruthful documents; used a borrowed identity or allowed others to use their identity in the bidding process; refused to sign a contract after winning a bid; failed to pay a part of a surety; or engaged in illegal actions that compromised the fairness of a tendering process, it says.
Agencies that issue a call for bids should specify a bid bond for bidders and a surety for the winning bidder, with the exception of the procurement of labor services, which in principle should not require the payment of a tender bond or surety, it adds.
A project owner has five years to begin the process of seizing or demanding a tender bond from a contractor found guilty of any such offenses, the amendments say, adding that the process shall not exceed 15 years from the closure or cancelation of a solicitation of bids.
Taiwan might be China’s next target after it has “walled off” Hong Kong from the rest of the world with its new national security legislation, Academia Sinica Institute of Sociology fellow Wu Jieh-min (吳介民) said on Thursday. At a seminar organized by the Economic Democracy Union, the Taiwan Association for Human Rights, the Hong Kong Outlanders and the Judicial Reform Foundation, Wu said that the legislation is simultaneously a fig leaf concealing Beijing’s autocratic rule in Hong Kong and a figurative “Berlin Wall,” denying democratic countries access to Hong Kong. Wu said it is evident that Taiwan would be China’s next target. The
The Fancy Frontier manga and anime expo held in Taipei over the weekend has sparked controversy, after a participant allegedly contravened the Act on Offenses Against Sexual Morality (妨害風化罪) by publicly exposing her private parts during a photo shoot. The two-day event opened at the Expo Dome at the Taipei Expo Park on Saturday, attracting numerous comic and anime creators, cosplayers, photographers and fans. Allegedly, a female cosplayer who was not wearing any underwear lifted up her skirt and revealed her private parts at an outdoor photography area near the venue. Event organizers said yesterday that to prevent indecent exposure, they have since
YOUNGEST PATIENT: Cases of botulism have been only sporadically reported over the past few years, with two in 2015, six in 2016 and none in the past three years The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) yesterday reported the nation’s first case of infant botulism this year, a four-month-old boy in northern Taiwan, as well as five new cases of Japanese encephalitis confirmed last week. The boy was introduced to homemade solid food in the middle of last month, but began to experience constipation and loss of appetite on June 23, CDC Epidemic Intelligence Center Deputy Director Guo Hung-wei (郭宏偉) said, adding that he was taken to the hospital when he developed a fever and shortness of breath on June 25. In the hospital, the boy also experienced a rapid heartbeat, limb
The National Taiwan Museum’s Railway Department Park in Taipei is to open to the public today. The park in Datong District (大同) near the North Gate (北門, Beimen) is one of the museum’s four branches. During the Japanese colonial era, the site housed the railway department of the Office of the Governor-General of Taiwan’s Bureau of Transportation. After World War II, it served as the headquarters for the Taiwan Railways Administration (TRA) for several decades. In 2007, it was listed as a national monument under the Cultural Heritage Preservation Act (文化資產保存法). At an opening ceremony yesterday, Minister of Transportation and Communications Lin Chia-lung