The WTO Agreement on Government Procurement Members: What You Need to Know

The World Trade Organization (WTO) is an international organization that promotes free trade and economic cooperation among member countries. One of the key agreements of the WTO is the Agreement on Government Procurement (GPA), which governs the way that member countries conduct procurement processes for goods and services.

The GPA was first established in 1981 and has since been updated several times, most recently in 2014. Currently, there are 20 member countries that are party to the GPA, including the United States, the European Union, and Japan.

The GPA aims to promote transparency and fair competition in government procurement processes by requiring member countries to follow certain principles. For example, member countries must publish their procurement opportunities and provide equal access to all suppliers. They must also evaluate bids based on objective criteria and avoid discriminating against suppliers based on their nationality.

Members of the GPA also agree to allow suppliers from other member countries to participate in their procurement processes on the same basis as domestic suppliers. This means that suppliers from countries that are not party to the GPA may face more barriers to entry in government procurement markets.

The benefits of being a member of the GPA are numerous. For member countries, participation in the agreement can lead to increased competition, better quality goods and services, and lower prices for taxpayers. For suppliers, access to government procurement markets can be an important source of revenue and can help them expand into new markets.

However, becoming a member of the GPA is not easy. Countries must meet certain criteria related to their procurement processes, including transparency and non-discrimination. They must also agree to open up their government procurement markets to suppliers from other member countries.

Overall, the WTO Agreement on Government Procurement is an important tool for promoting fair and transparent procurement processes among member countries. As more countries around the world recognize the benefits of free and open trade, it is likely that the number of GPA members will continue to increase in the coming years.