The Government e Marketplace (GeM) is assisting ministries, PSUs and state governments in procuring products online at competitive prices
The Centre is procuring key materials for its flagship schemes, including laptops, computers, smartphones and printers, online to save time and costs. Surprisingly, it is ordering not from big e-commerce companies like Flipkart and Amazon but its own Government e Marketplace (GeM).
According to a report in The Financial Express, this little-known government portal is powered by Prime Minister Narendra Modi's Make in India initiative and is assisting ministries, PSUs and state governments in procuring these products at competitive prices.
For instance, the Maharashtra government's Women and Child Development Department purchased over 1.2 lakh smartphones for its flagship Poshan Abhiyan scheme from this portal through competitive bidding. The total cost of this order was nearly Rs 100 crore, with each smartphone costing Rs 8,300.
The India Post Payments Bank placed a similar order for 1.5 lakh smartphones on the portal in November last year. The bank could select from a wide variety of manufacturers present on the government platform and chose two brands to fulfil its requirement. The total cost of the order was Rs 153 crore.
This portal was launched by PM Modi in 2016 and was aimed at eradicating corruption prevailing in public procurement schemes, which cost the government nearly Rs 3 lakh crore annually. In just three years to 2018, the portal has clocked Rs 17,000 crore in revenue, with a total order value of Rs 22,000 crore. Of these, orders worth Rs 4,200 crore were delayed due to ongoing elections or other similar reasons.GeM CEO Radha Chauhan expects the portal to achieve a revenue of Rs 50,000 crore in the current fiscal, given the strong demand among state and central government departments.The Great Diwali Discount!
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