In order to ensure open, fair and transparent conditions of competition in public procurement, a number of WTO members negotiated the Public Procurement Agreement (GPA). As a result, the first Tokyo Round Code on Government Procurement was signed in 1979 and came into force in 1981. It was amended in 1987 and the amendment came into force in 1988. The parties to the agreement then negotiated the extension of the scope and scope of the agreement, in parallel with the Uruguay Round. Finally, on 15 April 1994, a new public procurement agreement (GPA 1994) was signed in Marrakech at the same time as the WTO agreement, which came into force on 1 January 1996. The revised GPA, which came into force on 6 April 2014, is attracting increasing attention around the world, but the liberalisation of public procurement is not a completely new idea. Within the OECD, efforts have been made at an early stage to ensure that public procurement is subject to internationally accepted trade rules. The case was then included in the Tokyo trade negotiations under the GATT in 1976. The Public Procurement Agreement (GPA) requires that open, fair and transparent conditions of competition be guaranteed for public procurement. To this end, the text of the agreement contains general principles and detailed procedural requirements that the parties to the GPA must apply to covered purchasing activities. The GPA`s fundamental objective is to open mutual public procurement between its parties.
Following several rounds of negotiations, the GPA parties have opened purchase activities valued at an estimated $1.7 trillion per year for international competition (i.e., suppliers of construction products, services or services). The text of the agreement establishes rules that require open, fair and transparent conditions of competition for public procurement. However, these rules do not automatically apply to all purchasing activities of each party. On the contrary, hedging schedules play a key role in determining whether or not a buying activity is covered by the agreement. Only purchase activities carried out by listed companies that purchase goods, services or listed works above the specified thresholds are covered by the agreement. These calendars are open to the public. The GPA is a multi-lateral agreement within the WTO framework, which means that not all WTO members are parties to the agreement. Currently, the agreement consists of 20 parties, with 48 WTO members. Thirty-six WTO members/observers participate in the GPA committee as observers.
Of these, 12 members are in the process of joining the agreement. While the revised GPA came into force for most parties, the 1994 GPA will remain in force for parties that are still in the process of ratifying the revised agreement. Therefore, the two versions of the MPA co-exist until all contracting parties are bound by the revised agreement. Between a part of the 1994 GPA and a portion of the revised GPA, the 1994 MPA (including Appendix I) continues to apply.