All the salient aspects of the report of the Court of Auditors on the financial statements of Consip, the company controlled by the Ministry of Economy which deals with public administration purchases
Centralized tenders divided into smaller lots must be launched to allow access also for small and medium-sized enterprises and to enhance competition in the market. It is the advice given by the Court of Auditors to Consip, the purchasing department of the Public Administration controlled by the Ministry of Economy and Finance, which emerges from the report sent to Parliament and relating to the 2018 financial statements. According to the accounting magistracy, moreover, the excessive size of the tenders has had a negative impact both on the award times and on the emergence of anti-competitive agreements between the dominant companies.
Precisely during 2018, the Court reports that the use of centralized purchases has been further incentivized and that the spending review policies have substantially extended the perimeter of mandatory use of Mepa, the PA electronic market, to all public administrations .
THE OPERATING RESULT
The economic management of accounting Consip shows a positive operating result of 5,799,757 euros, with an increase of 11.43 percent compared to the previous year. It is a net result, it is noted, which sees its incidence on the value of production increase (7.79 percent compared to 7.4 in the previous year). On the equity front, it should be noted that it amounts to 35,035 thousand euros with an increase compared to 2017 of 3,604 thousand euros or 11.47 percent.
COSTS FOR STAFF AND CONSULTATIONS
As regards the costs incurred by Consip, that for personnel is equal to 31,823 thousand euros with an increase of 129 thousand euros compared to 2017 (0.41 percent). For consultancy – which is administrative and tax, managerial, legal – and for operational support in 2018 the cost is equal to 3,440 thousand euro. Compared to the previous year, there was a decrease of 764 thousand euro (-18.17 per cent), attributable – reports the accounting magistrate – to the lower use of "Assistance services", in particular for specialist assistance (from 3,214 thousand of euro in 2017 to 2,052 thousand of euro in 2018) with a decreased incidence on total expenditure in 2018 (from 76.45 percent in 2017 to 59.65 percent in 2018).
EXPENDITURE AND SPENDING REVIEW
Potential savings, "understood as the annual value of savings from unit prices compared to the average prices of the public administration on unit purchase prices, relating to" agreements "and" framework agreements ", came to € 3,053 million. The Court observes that this figure corresponds to what was estimated in the case in which the conventions were used in full (and not partially, as is the case today) for the product categories covered. Furthermore, it underlines that, at least as regards the central administrations, in the last years it has not recorded a reduction in expenditure equal to that estimated on the budget chapters intended for the purchase of goods and services: indeed, despite the constant strengthening and the expansion of the obligations of the public administrations to adhere to the conventions in question, "almost 70 percent of the expenditure for goods and services of the Ministries continues to be carried out, for various reasons, outside the Consip instruments".
The judiciary chaired by Angelo Buscema reports that "with the extension of the role entrusted to Consip, a more careful and objective assessment of the savings in expenditure actually achieved seems appropriate, given that the system provides for the possibility for central administrations to establish autonomous procedures for the procurement of goods and services of their own interest, also in derogation of the general obligation to make use of the framework agreements referred to in article 26, paragraph 3, of Law no. December 23, 1999, n. 488, provided that the administrations can demonstrate that they have sought and achieved better conditions than those contained in the framework agreements, within the constraints imposed by the legislator both ex ante (insuperability of the conditions transfused in the framework agreements) and ex post (nullity of acts carried out in violation and administrative liability in the accounting jurisdiction of the officials who acted in violation of the law and with unjustified expenditure of public resources) ".
The Court of Auditors then notes that the centralized purchase of goods and services, which sees Consip as the main contracting authority, "is constructive with a view to making the public administration's supply system more efficient" but notes that "the the centralized purchasing model has two main problems ": the first is the" limited freedom of choice of the contractor by the individual administrations "and the second is" the risk of restricting market access to large companies only, since these are the only ones in possession of the requisites of economic and financial capacity necessary to participate in tenders with ever higher amounts ". Certainly, he underlines, "the progressive average quantitative downsizing of Consip tenders is to be welcomed with favor".
A separate chapter is dedicated to the dispute for which Consip carried out a wider monitoring for the period between 2012 and 2018. As a result, at the end of 2018, a total of 776 appeals were notified to the company; of these 215 (28 percent of the issues) were still pending. As regards the product sectors in which the highest litigation was recorded, seven out of ten appeals (572 out of 776 in total) concerned only five areas: "ICT / TLC services and supplies", "Cleaning and facility management", "Services energy to buildings and territory "," Health services and supplies "," Waste collection and transport ". In these sectors, more than 60 per cent of the total number of recurring companies was also concentrated (185 out of 300). The phenomenon, the accounting magistrate notes, therefore remains "of a significant size" and translates into higher costs for the State due to system delays and diseconomies, less compliance with current regulations due to the consequent technical extensions, less efficient services for citizens, damage to businesses resulting from the failure to activate so-called "blocked" contracts. In this regard, it appears that – as at 31 December 2018 – the value of the contracts between administrations and companies that Consip defines as "blocked" by appeals on the tenders referable to it amounts to approximately 769 million.
This is a machine translation from Italian language of a post published on Start Magazine at the URL https://www.startmag.it/economia/che-cosa-ha-visto-la-corte-dei-conti-nei-conti-della-consip/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=che-cosa-ha-visto-la-corte-dei-conti-nei-conti-della-consip on Sat, 13 Jun 2020 05:21:02 +0000.