Governor Lolo reaffirms ASG procurement policy: "Purchase Local First"
In accordance with his administration’s vision, and their mission to push for a successful private sector, thereby creating more jobs, Gov. Lolo Matalasi Moliga has “reaffirmed” the government’s 'purchase local first' preference, thereby giving local business the chance to secure supplies for ASG.
In an Oct. 25 memo to chief procurement officer, Tiaotalaga John Kruse, the governor noted that, notwithstanding the legal dictates of procurement law, ASG’s purchasing policy significantly affects the economic development and private sector development landscape of the territory.
“There exists a very delicate balance between maximizing the associate benefits of every public dollar spent to purchase goods and the responsibility of government to stimulate economic development thru private sector strengthening and expansion,” he said.
The governor pointed out that the government’s fiscal year 2014 budget “is an economic development and private sector stimulant financial plan” reflecting the administration’s commitment to job creation through “aggressively invigorating and expanding” American Samoa’s economy.
“Our primary agent, facilitating the advancement of this vision, is our local businesses because they employ our people and they generate revenues to finance the operation of the government,” he said. “So the government might save money through direct purchases from off-island companies, bypassing our local businesses, regrettably, [and] our goal of job creation and private sector business expansion is thwarted,” he said.
Lolo says the benefits connected with savings are short-lived, but new jobs and tax payments to the government are long lasting and the fundamental basis for economic expansion.
Therefore, said Lolo, he reaffirms ASG’s “Local Purchase Preference Policy” on all government procurement of goods and services. “Give our local businesses the opportunity to seek suppliers from off-island to meet purchase specifications,” he wrote to Tiaotalaga.
“Our basic objective is job creation and indirectly investing in local businesses, inherent in the government’s purchase policy, assures the successful achievement of this territorial initiative,” Lolo concluded.
Copies of the memo were sent to all departments and offices directors as well as Lt. Gov. Lemanu Peleti Mauga.
Lolo had promised throughout his gubernatorial campaign last year that he will work together with the private sector to boost the local economy, as they will provide more employment opportunities.
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