August 12, 2016 Source: Treasury Department
In order to implement the relevant requirements of the State Council, to promote the construction of a social credit system, and to improve the mechanism of trustworthiness, incentives and breach of trust, the Ministry of Finance formulated and issued the "Notice on Relevant Issues Concerning Inquiry and Use of Credit Records in Government Procurement Activities" (Cai Ku  No. 125, (Hereinafter referred to as the "Notice"). Recently, the relevant person in charge of the Treasury Department (Government Procurement Management Office) of the Ministry of Finance accepted an interview with reporters on issues related to the Notice.
Q: What is the important role of querying and using credit information in government procurement activities?
A: First of all, querying and using credit information in government procurement activities is a specific measure to implement the construction of a social credit system. The 18th National Congress of the Party and the 3rd, 4th, and 5th Plenary Sessions of the 18th CPC Central Committee, the "12th Five-Year Plan", "13th Five-Year Plan", and relevant documents of the State Council all set clear requirements for the construction of the social credit system. In recent years, the Ministry of Finance and relevant departments have jointly signed a number of memorandums of cooperation, which explicitly proposed that relevant untrustworthy subjects be restricted from participating in government procurement activities in accordance with the law. Querying and using credit information in government procurement activities and promoting the establishment of relevant working mechanisms, and the effective application of credit information and credit reports, are important signs for the implementation of the social credit system in the field of government procurement.
Second, querying and using credit information in government procurement activities is an effective way to implement the principle of good faith. Good faith is one of the basic principles of government procurement. Querying and using credit records in government procurement activities, and performing trustworthy incentives and breach of trust on relevant entities is an effective way to implement the principle of good faith. It also plays an important role in reducing market operating costs, improving the business environment, and conducting government procurement activities efficiently. .
Q: What is the core content and main disciplinary measures of the Notice?
A: The Notice is divided into three parts. The first part emphasizes the significance and role of querying and using credit information in government procurement activities. The second part clarifies the general requirements of related work, query channels, and specific regulations on the use of credit information. The third part puts forward specific work requirements. The core content of the Notice is specific disciplinary measures against dishonest suppliers, review experts, and procurement agencies. It mainly includes: the purchaser or the procurement agency refuses the untrustworthy supplier to participate in government procurement activities; the untrustworthy personnel with bad behaviors such as bribery, bribery, fraud, etc. shall not be hired as review experts, and the hired staff shall be dismissed in a timely manner; Credit history of purchasing agents, etc. In addition, the "Notice" also specifies the rules for dealing with situations in which suppliers form a consortium to participate in government procurement activities, and purchasers or procurement agents select experts outside the warehouse.
Q: What should be paid attention to when implementing the Notice?
A: The first is to clarify the query channels. According to the actual situation of the construction of the national comprehensive credit information sharing platform, the "Notice" clarified the credit information inquiry channels, requiring financial departments, purchasers and procurement agencies at all levels to pass the "Credit China" website, the Chinese government procurement network, etc. Channels query the credit records of relevant entities, but considering that the above channels have not yet covered all credit information, the Notice also stipulates that purchasers or procurement agencies should specify the credit information query channels in the procurement documents and introduce other credit information according to actual needs.
The second is to emphasize rational use according to law and regulations. Disciplinary subjects must be punished in place, and "misinjury" must be prevented. Judging from the specific dishonesty records, some dishonesty behaviors have not reached the prohibition stipulated by government procurement laws and regulations. Therefore, the "Notice" requires relevant units to strictly comply with the provisions of Article 22 of the "Government Procurement Law" in the use of credit information, and have a good record of whether they have a good business reputation, pay taxes in accordance with the law and social security funds, and commit major violations of the law. Records are screened and disciplinary suppliers are punished according to law; personnel with bad credit records such as bribery, bribery, fraud, etc. shall not be hired as review experts.
The third is to keep evidence. The "Notice" provides a series of disciplinary measures for dishonesty, and the relevant units have the burden of proof for the queries and complaints caused by them. To this end, the "Notice" emphasizes that relevant units should take necessary measures to keep credit information inquiry records and evidence, and keep them with other procurement documents. At the same time, the purchaser or procurement agency is required to specify the inquiry channels and deadlines for the inquiry of credit information, the specific information of the inquiry records of credit information and the retention of evidence in the procurement documents.