Frequently Asked Questions about PPCC

1. What is the Public Procurement and Concessions Commission (PPCC)?


PPCC is an autonomous entity of Government established in 2005 by an Act of Legislation and Amended and Restated in 2010 to regulate all forms of Public Procurement and Concessions and provide for institutional structures for public procurement and concessions, and stipulates methods and procedures for public procurement and concessions processes.


2. Does PPCC conduct procurement for the Government of Liberia?


No.  Public procurement is decentralized to procuring entities. PPCC is a regulatory agency responsible to monitor compliance with the PPC Act and  ensure the   economic and efficient use of public funds in public procurement and to ensure that public  procurement and concessions processes are conducted in a fair, transparent and non- discriminatory manner.


3. Does PPCC have any capacity-building program for procurement personnel/practitioners?


Yes. PPCC conducts scheduled and unscheduled training for public officials and the private sector. Also, in partnership with the World Bank and other entities of government, PPCC  has established the Intensive Procurement Training Program (IPTP) similar to the Financial Management Training Program (FMTP) attached to the University of Liberia (UL) to train procurement professionals at the graduate level.


4. Is there another Entity of Government that conducts procurement training?


Yes. The Liberia institute of Public Administration offers a variety of short term courses in Procurement.


5. Are there sanctions/penalties for persons who contravene any provision of the PPC Act?


Yes. Any person who contravenes any provision of this Act like receiving or giving kickbacks or bribes, being involved with connivance, collusion, cohesion, conflict of interest, not timely or properly  executing contracts, etc. commits an offence.  Any such person convicted by a Court of a violation of this Act shall, upon summary conviction, be liable to imprisonment for a period not exceeding five (5) years and or a fine not exceeding US$100,000. Violation of provisions of this Act may also constitute grounds for debarment. The Commission may recommend for prosecution any person who in the view of the Commission has contravened in any material respect the provisions of this Act.


6. Can a Procuring Entity proceed with its procurement activities without an approved procurement plan?


No. Upon budget approval, the Procurement Unit shall prepare an annual procurement plan for goods, works, and services in accordance with the Procuring Entity's approved programs and budget and furnish it to the Procurement Committee for  review and approval,  The Procurement Committee shall furnish the procurement plan  to the Commission for review and approval. (Section 40, 2/3)


7. What if a Procuring Entity receives additional funds from Ministry of Finance and/or makes changes in its priorities?


On a quarterly basis or whenever it becomes necessary, each Procuring Entity, shall review and modify its procurement plan and forward a copy to the Commission and the Minister of Finance. (Section 40, 5)


8. What is meant by “No Objection”? 


It is a “prior approval” letter from the Commission to a procuring entity expressing “no objection” to the Entity’s procurement process in response to its request submitted. “No objection” letter does not excuse an entity from fault of contravening the Act if the approval was obtained based on wrong information and/or false documents submitted.
Conditions requiring “No Objection”:
a) Time for Entering into Contracts/Notice of Intent to Award Contracts (Section 31): Prior notice to the Commission is required for proposed contract awards exceeding the following thresholds: Goods-US$200,000; Works-US$400,000; Services-US$100,000. Below these threshold levels, a notice to the Commission is for information and publication of contract award as required by Section 37 of the PPC Act. 

b) Restricted Bidding (Section 50/51):  Public procurement by means of restricted bidding is subject to prior approval by the Commission if the estimated contract value exceeds US$50,000 for Goods, US$20,000 for Services and US$100,000 for Works. As indicated above, below these threshold levels, a notice to the Commission is for information and publication of contract award as required by Section 37 of the PPC Act.
c) Sole/Single Source (Section 55): Public procurement by means of sole source is permitted only in circumstances as prescribed in this section and is subject to prior approval by the Commission irrespective of its estimated value.


9. What is the essence of procurement planning?


Procurement planning is a requirement of the PPC Act (Section 40, 1). It is critical to achieving maximum value for public expenditures. It is a tool that provides insight into how government’s money is projected to be spent, but more importantly, it allows the commission to monitor compliance and aids public officials to be accountable.


10. Where can I get information on invitation/solicitation to bid (ITB) by public entities?


ITBs are to be published in the Newspapers of wide circulation and on the website of the PPCC (Section 57). Publication on the website of the Procuring Entities does not substitute for the aforementioned, but is in addition to publication in the newspaper.


11. Can a Procuring Entity carry out a bidding process for a procurement amount higher than the estimated cost reflected on the procurement plan approved by the Commission?

No. All contract packages advertised for bid must coincide with the estimated cost on the procurement plan. Hence, the reason why the procurement plan should be reviewed, modified and approved when required.

12. What is a Bid Evaluation Panel?


The Bid Evaluation Panel is an ad hoc body comprising of persons knowledgeable and skilled in the object of procurement.

13. What is the responsibility of the Bid Evaluation Panel?


It is responsible for the evaluation of bids submitted in accordance with the predetermined and published evaluation criteria outlined to bidders in the bid documents in accordance with the PPC Act (Section 30, 2).


14. Who is responsible for constituting the Bid Evaluation Panel?


The procuring entity’s Procurement committee is responsible for constituting the Bid Evaluation Panel with persons possessing the required expertise needed to evaluate bids solicited by the procuring entity (Section 30, 1).


15. Who is qualified to serve on the bid Evaluation Panel?


Individuals with the required expertise of the object of procurement. No member of the PPCC or a Procurement Committee shall serve on the Bid Evaluation Panel (Section 30, 1/4).


16. After the Bid Evaluation Panel completes evaluation of bid, what is the next step?


The next step is to Prepare and Submit evaluation reports with recommendations for contract award for the consideration of the Procurement Committee or head of the procuring entity (Section 30, 2).


17. When an entity has completed its competitive bidding process, what is the next step?

If the contract is below the threshold of US$200,000 for Goods, US$100,000 for Services and US$400,000 for Works, the procuring entity may proceed to award contract without obtaining “no objection” letter from the Commission.

18. How long should an entity wait before receiving response to its “notice of intent to award contract” from the Commission?


When an entity submits a notice of intent to award a procurement contract, the Commission has 14 days in which to act upon said request (Section 31).


19. What happens if the 14 days waiting period to the Commission has lapsed without a response since the notification of intent to award a procurement contract was issued?

The Procuring Entity may proceed with the award of the contract and the finalization of the procurement process (Section 31).

20.  When are the Ministry of Finance (MOF) and the Ministry of Justice (MOJ) involvement required on procurement contracts?

The Ministry of Finance shall take part in the negotiations and signing of contracts over US $250,000 and the contracts shall be attested to by the Ministry of Justice (Regulations 003).