Public procurement portal GeM will roll out its advanced version in the next couple of months which will be anchored in the unified procurement system to provide a single user flow for government buyers, a senior official said on Sunday. Government e-Marketplace (GeM) CEO Talleen Kumar said that this system will consolidate all government procurement onto a single platform leading to economies of scale, better price discovery and sharing of best practices.
"Over the next couple of months, GeM shall be rolling out GeM 4.0 - which will be anchored in the unified procurement system," Kumar said at GeM-CII national public procurement conclave 2020.
He said that the functionality of other portals such as the Central Public Procurement portal, the Indian Railway Electronic Procurement System and the Defence Public Procurement portal will be brought onto GeM in a phased manner to provide a uniform experience to all buyers.
"GeM 4.0 aims to offer a unified system that is smarter, better unified, more intelligent and inclusive. This involves a technology roadmap that enhances each and every step of the user experience on the portal - creating unified and seamless user journeys for buyers and sellers. GeM 4.0 represents one of the largest uses of advanced technology on any government platform in the world," he added.
Kumar said that the GeM 4.0 will have significant enhancements and improvements with multiple features and functionalities for diverse buyers.
"Use of cutting-edge technology such as advanced analytics, business intelligence, natural language processing, smart contracts will play a key role in enhancing the usability and transparency on the portal. It will also enable buyers to carry out their procurement planning and monitoring, create bids on GeM from within their own systems and decide on what to procure from GeM," he added.
Further anomalous behaviour relating to price, catalogues, procurement and malpractices will also be flagged through use of Artificial Intelligence, he said.
The CEO also said that till now, availing financing through formal financial institutions has not been frictionless for MSMEs.
"However, with the new SAHAY platform, a new avenue has opened up to provide a solution to the working capital needs of MSMEs...'GeM-SAHAY' can be utilised to provide frictionless financing for MSMEs on GeM where they can now get a loan at the point of acceptance of an order on the platform," he said.
The country's leading lenders are associated with the SAHAY platform, Kumar informed.
"It is a mix of the largest public sector bank SBI, leading private sector banks like ICICI Bank, HDFC Bank, Axis Bank, IDFC First Bank and leading NBFC like Bajaj Finserv. This will go live by the end of August, 2020," he added.