ENTITY SUBJECT TO ASSESSMENT CARIBBEAN EXPORT DEVELOPMENT AGENCY
PILLAR PILLAR SUBJECT TO ASSESSMENT (1)
1 INTERNAL CONTROL
3 EXTERNAL AUDIT
6 FINANCIAL INSTRUMENTS NO
7 SUB-DELEGATION NO
(1) The Entity should state here YES or NO to indicate whether the pillar is subject to assessment.
Pillars 1, 2 and 3 are always subject to assessment.
As regards Pillars 4 to 7 at least one of these Pillars should always apply and be subject to assessment otherwise no
budget implementation tasks are entrusted.
Entity : CARIBBEAN EXPORT DEVELOPMENT AGENCY
1 ST Floor Baobab Tower
Fax firstname.lastname@example.org Phone
Mr Anthony Bradshaw Function
E-Mail email@example.com Phone/Fax
EuropeAid Development and Cooperation Office
Name Danilo BRUNO Function / DEVCO unit
Chief Operating Officer
Audit Task Manager
DEVCO G3, Latin America and Caribbean
PILLAR 1 - INTERNAL CONTROL
The Core Values of the Agency are stated in the Staff Handbook under section 2.8 entitled “Core Values” and
2.9 “Code of Conduct.” Each Core Value has a heading with a code of conduct and accepted ethical behaviour that demonstrate the value. The Core Values are Teamwork, Open Communication, Transparency, Ownership and Commitment. The staff manual representation is as follows:
We encourage collaboration with all stakeholders and embrace cultural diversity within the framework of a team culture. It speaks to individual responsibility and accountability, and a mutually supportive approach to
Team work through mentorship and self-development. This includes progressive leadership and management as demonstrated through expected behaviors of integrity, trust, respect, loyalty and fairness.
• Transparent Communication
We believe that effective and authentic communication drives work and people. This describes the way information is shared and communicated both formally and informally with all stakeholders and dialogue is solution oriented, open, timely, honest and professional. Feedback is definitely encouraged, appreciated and acted upon where necessary.
• Results Driven
We are market driven and customer focused. There is focus on results and superior performance through customer service, innovation, flexibility, creativity, cost effective orientation, policy compliance, and utilizing best practices that add value to stakeholders.
We take ownership and are responsible for the delivery of outcomes. This describes the active contribution of staff to create a learning and successful Agency.
We are committed to the success of the Agency and strive for excellence. This states the expected behaviors that would define the commitment of staff to the changing needs of the Agency while remaining compliant to
Operational Policies and Governing Laws.
The Code of Conduct is derived from the Core Values. The Agency’s staff exercises these principles and a similar code of conduct is expected from our service providers.
We are guided by the following principles:
Equal rights: In our work with other people we make no differentiation in respect of gender, skin colour, religion, culture, education, or social status. .
Respect of contractual and legal obligations: We fulfill our contractual commitments. We respect the laws governing Barbados, the Dominican Republic and other territories as required.
Transparency: We ensure that our actions adhere to the tenets of transparency.
Loyalty: We are loyal to our company. This also means providing constructive criticism openly within the
Confidentiality: We handle all business information confidentially whenever its nature necessitates discretion or if this is expressly required.
Partnership-based Cooperation: We work together with our internal and external stakeholders on the basis of fairness and reliability.
The Governance Oversight Structure for the Agency is detailed in the ‘Agreement establishing the Caribbean
Export Development Agency (Caribbean Export)’. The Agreement highlights the reporting framework for the
Agency, the organizational structure, roles and the mechanisms for governance and decision making.
The Agency has the following organs which represent the governance and organizational structure.
COUNCIL OF MINISTERS
The Council of Ministers is composed of the governments of the following fifteen (15) CARIFORUM States:
Antigua and Barbuda, The Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Dominica, Dominican Republic, Grenada, Guyana, Haiti,
Jamaica, Saint Lucia, St Kitts and Nevis, St Vincent and the Grenadines, Suriname and Trinidad and Tobago
The Council is convened on an annual basis. The membership consists of one (1) Minister from each State and the Chairperson is appointed for a term of one (1) year.
BOARD OF DIRECTORS
The Board of Directors is composed of a public or private sector person from each CARIFORUM State. The
Board meets on a semi-annual basis (or more if required). The Agency reports formally on its technical and financial affairs at Board meetings but also circulates a report of highlights to the Board on a monthly basis.
The Board reports to the Council of Ministers through the CARIFORUM Directorate. The Board has responsibility for the conduct of the operations of the Agency and addresses oversight regarding the implementation of activities of the Agency, the achievement of overall objectives and matters at the policy level. The Board has a term of two (2) years whilst the Chairperson is selected annually on a rotational basis.
EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR AND STAFF
The Executive Director is the Chief Executive Officer and has tenure of three (3) years on a renewable basis.
The Executive Director has responsibility for implementing policy initiatives from the Board and giving oversight to the strategic and operational issues relating to the Organization.
The Executive Director heads the management team which comprises the Deputy Executive Director, Chief
Operating Officer, Manager – Competitiveness & Innovation, Manager - Trade and Development and the
Services Specialist. The HR Specialist is invited to attend management meetings.
The Management team has responsibility for aligning and coordinating the activities of the Agency to achieve the strategic objectives of the Agency, which are coherent with its mandate. The Management team meets monthly to review issues at the organizational and departmental levels and to address both operational and strategic issues.
Operating in a region where the challenges affecting Small Island Developing States (SIDS) are intensified during a period of economic turmoil, Caribbean Export has a significant role to play in the development of the region and is mindful of the role of risk management in successfully addressing the needs of the region.
Emanating from its work to develop and institute a comprehensive Monitoring and Evaluation (M&E)
Framework 1 , key risks and assumptions for the sustained operations at the Agency level and programme level were explored, and a comprehensive risk assessment tool has been developed which is embedded in the M&E framework.
The approach to Risk Assessment at the Agency is grounded in the procedures of the Agency which addresses
M&E. The Agency is faced with varying internal as well as external risk factors which are economic, political and institutional in nature. The assessment of such risks is facilitated by the capture of global and programme specific risks, both of the internal and external nature which are presented in registers to facilitate review by programme managers.
The global level risks which apply generally across the board, in the execution of Caribbean Export’s interventions fall under the following broad categories: Political Conditions; Economic Conditions; Institutional challenges/issues; General Sustainability; Work Environment and General Operations
Purpose and Application of the Risk Register
The monitoring and evaluation process comprises a ‘Risk Management Matrix’ which uses several tools at both the global and programme levels. This document is supported by the Agency’s ‘Programme Logframe’ which captures the key indicators for measuring the success of support initiatives. One important tool employed at both the organisational and programme levels, is a ‘Global Risk Register’. This is used to capture the risks associated with the execution of the Agency’s overarching as well as specific objectives. These outlined risks are based upon several assumptions of conditions which are expected to exist for the success of interventions made.
At the global level, the completed ‘Risk Management Matrix’ goes on to also highlight mitigation measures to be taken and acts as a tool to assist the managers in their decision making processes. This tool pertains to the likelihood of success or failure of interventions designed. In this regard at the beginning of each planning period a formal risk assessment procedure is undertaken. During structured debriefing meetings, the global
1 The framework, though set up almost exclusively to track work being undertaken under the current 10 th EDF funded
Regional Private Sector Development Programme is suitably crafted to allow its adaptation to any Agency implemented initiative.
risk register is utilised in order to address risks identified and to propose appropriate mitigation measures agreed upon. At this time, deadlines and appropriate responsibilities for execution are also determined.
At the programme level such steps are also taken, with a more detailed ‘Programme Risk Register’ utilised which identifies the risks of support initiatives at the specific programme objective level. At both global and programme planning stages, such risks, assumptions and mitigation measures are ultimately depicted within the ‘Risk Management Matrix’ which is completed in collaboration with and used by programme officers in order to ensure the successful execution of support interventions. Overall, Caribbean Export acknowledges that in the planning and execution of its work both internal and external factors may give rise to risks and the need to articulate assumptions in the planning process over time. Consequently, during the monitoring process, officers are tasked with ensuring that relevant objectively verifiable information is collected and disseminated on a regular basis to decision makers regarding the evolution of risk factors, thereby facilitating decision making for timely risk mitigation.
Segregation of duties is a necessary corollary to effective internal control as it reduces the possibility of mistakes and potential inappropriate actions.
Segregation of duties exists in the Agency relating to the authorisation, processing, recording and reporting of transactions undertaken within the Agency, and the custody of assets. For example, the person who requisitions good and services or raises a purchase order for such is not the person who approves it. Approval is done by the relevant line manager (or designate) and further checks for authenticity and completeness are then carried out within the Finance Department. The authorization, processing and approval of transactions are performed in accordance with the Operations Manual and are undertaken by various personnel.
Supervisory and sign-off procedures are also carried out by the programme manager and senior finance personnel and are clearly identified in the Operations manual. The procedures relating to the cheque signing process (e.g. two signatures are required on all cheques) bank reconciliations (prepared monthly and approved by an officer other than the preparer) the recording of transactions in the General Ledger (various personnel are involved in the recording and vetting of entries made subsequent to approval by the entry via approval of activity by the manager) are undertaken by various personnel and further supports segregation of duties and mitigation of conflicts of interest.
(Including inter alia general IT controls, application controls, data integrity and audit trails)
The use of Information Technology (IT) within Caribbean Export has become increasingly significant, particularly following the implementation of the electronic document and records management system
(EDRMS) along with greater use of the ‘Sage ACCPAC’ financial recording and reporting system. The management of IT risks has therefore been elevated within the Agency and now forms a key part of corporate governance. Accordingly, the effective and efficient management of IT is vital to the success of the Agency.
As computer technology advances, Caribbean Export has become increasingly dependent on computerised information systems to carry out its business operations to process, maintain and report essential information.
There is also an increasing range of IT vulnerabilities and threats, which have to be effectively and efficiently managed. Consequently, the confidentiality, integrity, availability and reliability of computerised data and of the systems that process, maintain and report such data are a major concern to the auditing process. Hence, the main role of the internal IT audit facility is to evaluate the effectiveness and efficiency of IT controls in information systems and related operations, to ensure they are operating as intended.
IT controls within Caribbean Export includes management, as well as other senior personnel and are designed to provide reasonable assurances regarding the achievement of objectives in the following categories namely: effectiveness and efficiency of operations, reliability of financial reporting, compliance with applicable laws and regulations and appropriate audit trails. For example, IT breaches or violations are reported to management and the appropriate senior personnel for action.
Caribbean Export’s general controls apply to all areas of the Agency including the IT infrastructure and support services. Some examples of general controls within Caribbean Export are: internal accounting controls, operational controls, organizational security policies and procedures, overall policies for the design and use of adequate documents and records, procedures and practices to ensure adequate safeguards over access, physical and logical security policies for all data centers (Barbados and SRO) and IT resources.
Application controls within Caribbean Export on the other hand, pertains to specific computer applications.
They include controls that help to ensure the proper authorisation, completeness, accuracy and validity of transactions, maintenance and other types of data input.
The Agency through its Operations Manual and Staff Handbook has in place adequate internal control policies and procedures to aid in the prevention and deterrence of fraud, error and irregularities and to address any such occurrence.
Our voucher and other processing systems also assist greatly in the prevention, detection and correction of errors and irregularities. In addition disciplinary procedures aid in addressing any such occurrence in a structured way within the context of the legal framework. Supporting documentation which includes, signed contracts, quotations where necessary and original invoices are some of the mandatory documentation which must accompany any purchase orders submitted for processing. The transaction must be approved by the relevant line manager (or designate) prior to reaching Finance, which in turn would make its own mandatory checks to ensure that the request is properly supported and documented prior to processing.
In the processing of payments all original documentation as well as the purchase order must be attached to the payment expense voucher according to the procedure in the manual. Finally before the cheque is signed by two (2) signatories, all documentation is checked once more for completeness. Therefore, while no system is completely foolproof, the various approval processes and checks and balances mitigate the risk of fraud or irregularity. The overall process and the inclusion of checks and balances also mean that most errors are captured and corrected prior to entries being made to the general ledger.
The internal controls system and environment within the Agency includes the requisite controls to address the subject matter and provide a level of assurance that financial reports are free from material misstatement and
that processes and activities are undertaken within the context of a sound operating environment as detailed in the Operations manual and Staff handbook.
In terms of banking and cash control, the following actions are undertaken:
The relevant approved documentation must accompany the cheques to be signed. These are signed by two parties.
Signing limitations are established in accordance with the position level of the authorised officer.
Bank accounts are reconciled monthly to the balance in the General Ledger and all reconciling items are to be actioned within a month.
Bank reconciliations must be signed by the financial assistant/officer and approved by a senior officer.
Bank accounts are only kept at reputable commercial banks.
A bank account is kept in the currency of receipt from the EU and the local currency.
Separate bank accounts are used for individual programmes.
Cheques are not written for local payments of BBD 50.00 or less. All such payments are facilitated through petty cash.
The petty cash float is for a maximum of BBD 1,000 for SRO and BBD 500.00 for HO.
Petty cash requests and disbursements are made using Petty Cash vouchers.
Petty cash vouchers are signed by the personnel using and receiving the funds and by the personnel in charge of the petty cash, the Senior Financial Advisor, or Senior Advisor - Operations.
The petty cash fund is reconciled at the end of each month, or whenever the petty cash balance falls below $100 (whichever comes first), to the total original vouchers and invoices/receipts corresponding to the relevant period.
The petty cash reconciliation must be signed by the personnel in charge of the cash and approved by a financial officer.
Petty cash transactions are recorded when replenished and replenishment is done at least once a month, with the submission of the approved cash reconciliation along with the original voucher and invoices/receipts.
Petty cash shortcomings over BBD 5.00 must be repaid by the petty cashier or the officer in charge at the time.
Liability insurance is also in place to cover cash in the office.
Petty Cash must be kept locked in a till in a secured space
Caribbean Export has established procedures and guidelines to follow in the payroll function. The payroll is processed once a month. Deductions for Statutory payments are done and paid over to the Government on or before the 15 th of each month as mandated by the government statutes and regulations
Personnel files are kept for each staff member and a copy of their signed contract/s which identifies their name, address, title and amount to be paid is kept on that file is a secured space
The payroll is prepared by the Finance officer and checked by the Chief Operating Officer for accuracy and completeness.
A hard copy of the payroll document is approved and signed off by the Executive Director or the Chief
Operating Officer and is kept in a secured location. .
Payroll changes are approved by the Executive Director and for Senior Management by the Chairman of the
Board Salaries are budgeted and charged to agreed budget lines per the annual Work Programme and Budget.
Caribbean Export has implemented a comprehensive internal reporting system as part of its results based approach to management. As such, all officers are required to contribute to the timely generation of periodic and event specific reports which feed into an overall monitoring and performance management system. The intent is to ensure that all internal stakeholders share in the sense of ownership for the accomplishments of the Agency while maintaining and nurturing internal communication channels.
Specifically, regular intervention reports are prepared upon completion of all events and recorded as standalone proceedings or as Back to Office Reports. On a monthly basis internal stakeholders are privy to detailed Financial Reports thereby staying abreast of running expenditures and budgets. Other reports include total programme progress reports prepared on a quarterly basis and circulated to all staff along with a summary of progress towards the achievement of indicators. Additionally, a monthly publication entitled
“Highlights” which details key areas of the Agency’s work is disseminated internally.
External reporting: financial statements; reporting to key stakeholders
External reporting is undertaken by the Agency in order to: (a) foster a greater level of understanding about the Agency’s activities among its donors, beneficiaries and strategic partners; (b) raise awareness and the general profile of the Agency (c) create an atmosphere of transparency and accountability about its operations. As such, external reporting is handled as follows:
The Technical and Financial Progress Reports are prepared quarterly and disseminated to the EU
Delegation, CARIFORUM Directorate, on a quarterly basis.
The Annual Report: highlights Agency activities, evaluation information, generate interest in evaluation findings, and serve in the Agency’s public relations process. This annual publication presents evaluation information in the form of photographs, data, graphs, and human interest or success stories.
Short Communications such as Highlights: generate interest in full evaluation findings, and serve in the
Agency’s public relations process. Formats include verbal presentations at stakeholder meetings, critical reflection events with evaluation stakeholders and electronic communication [such as success stories posted on the Agency website (monthly) and disseminated in Trade Watch (quarterly)].
The Summary of Indicators Report: Submitted to for EU Delegation and the CARIFORUM Directorate points to the achievement of set targets on a biannual basis.
Publications: Success stories, Create, EU/CE Partnership, Trade Watch
Other reports prepared as required are specific reports for the Board of Directors which may be presented at official Board Meetings or otherwise as requested, reports detailing the contributions of member countries and reports addressing outstanding counterpart contributions.
The success of Caribbean Export’s endeavours to fulfil its mission, to achieve its vision and to translate its strategic as well as programme priorities into actions and results, depends on several factors. Such factors to a large extent include its ability to collect, analyse and communicate information as well as knowledge regarding the implementation of its interventions and the effects on beneficiaries. Among other things, it must monitor and evaluate its work in a measurable manner and based on reliable evidence, make appropriate adjustments in the design and implementation of its various programmes and projects.
In this regard, a results-based monitoring and evaluation framework was developed in the context of the 10 th
EDF funded Regional Private Sector Development Programme. This framework recognises that notwithstanding the significant work being undertaken by the Agency, the measurement of the impact of
Caribbean Export’s interventions at the macro goal level of poverty alleviation must be looked upon as contributory. However, the measurement and reporting of results at the output, outcomes and intermediate level are directly correlated to long term impacts. As such, important signals are tracked along each results chain in order to provide relevant, timely and reliable evidence-based information on the effectiveness of interventions, thereby contributing to the continuous improvement of the Agency’s strategic and operational decision-making process.
The monitoring and evaluation framework, however, is but one tool utilised by the Agency to ensure accountability. Other systems have been put in place or enhanced in the name of transparency, accountability and good governance as seen outlined in the areas below.
The internal control system of the Caribbean Export Development Agency includes the policies and procedures adopted by the management of the Agency. The purpose of these policies and procedures is to assist the agency in achieving its objective to ensure as much as possible, the orderly and efficient conduct of its business. This includes adherence to internal policies, the safeguarding of assets, the prevention of fraud and error, the accuracy and completeness of accounting records, the timely preparation of financial statements and management information, an appropriate level of segregation of duties and support to the procurement process.
Included in the above mentioned internal controls, are certain policies and procedures designed to give assurance that measures are in place to assist in the prevention, detection and correction of errors and to ensure that the recording of transactions are as accurate as possible. The procedures which guide execution of the above checks and balances may be found within the Operations Manual of the Agency. The Manual addresses accounting, reporting, segregation of duties and procurement issues.
The internal control system ensures that completed transactions are promptly and correctly recorded with the correct amounts in the appropriate accounts and ledgers, to facilitate the preparation of accurate financial statements in accordance with the financial procedures and regulations of the Agency. In addition the system also ensures that the procurement process is undertaken to ensure transparency and value for money is obtained.
The internal control team seeks to ensure that the internal control system is not compromised. Mitigation measures would also seek to avoid the chance that procedures may become inadequate due to changes in conditions or altogether obsolescence.
In conclusion, as a result of obtaining an understanding and becoming more familiar with the accounting and internal control environment, auditors can recommend improvements to the system as required.
While Caribbean Export, due to its small size does not have a specific internal audit function, it has firmly instituted policies and procedures that create a sound internal control environment that supports the effective and efficient operations of the Agency and also supports the reduction of risk in the implementation of its programmes.
The internal audit process is performed through a series of checks and balances to support the adherence to the regulations of the Agency.
The Agency is cognizant that a key objective of internal audit is to boost confidence in the operations of the
Agency through evaluation of the effectiveness of its governance structure, risk management profile and control processes. In this regard, Unit meetings are convened to discuss matters pertaining to policies and procedures and to address any issues highlighted. As an example of the Agency’s approach to internal auditing, recorded assets are compared with existing assets at reasonable intervals. The asset verification process is performed twice a year, as specified in the fixed asset procedure.
Internal controls are adhered to through the approval of purchase orders; the obtaining of quotes (formal and informal) according to the procedure in the Operations Manual; the checking and ensuring the mathematical accuracy of records and their attachments; the spot checking and verification of the petty cash; asset verification counts and segregation of duties to the extent practicable given the small staff size.
PILLAR 2 - ACCOUNTING
Accounting System and Policies
Caribbean Export Development Agency employs a robust Accounting system that embraces the five basic principles of Accounting Information Systems: Control, Relevance, Compatibility, Flexibility and Cost Benefit.
At the core of this accounting system is the Sage ACCPAC ERP Accounting application through which all accounting transactions are channelled. It serves as the central repository for all accounting data and is integral to report generation using the historical cost convention.
Guided by the Agency’s Operations Manual, the system is modular in design and allows for clear delineation of functions appropriate to Caribbean Export’s day to day operations. The modules for the Accounts Payable,
Accounts Receivable, Purchasing, General Ledger, Commitment Accounting and Bank Services allow for the necessary control and monitoring of business activities thus assuring the reliability of financial statements in keeping with International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS).
Caribbean Export’s programme of work touches a wide cross section of industries, sectors and markets at a national and regional level. The chart of accounts architecture allows for the production of dynamic reporting that is relevant, timely and useful.
The system conforms to the business requirements of being in a project environment managing donor funds and adhering to rules and regulations based on EDF rules and regulations. The system is also scalable and flexible to meet the changing environment of technological, financial and regulatory developments.
The benefits of capturing data at such a granular level accrue not only to the end user internally but it feeds into the regional network of stakeholders who utilise this data in effective decision making and planning.
Significant Accounting Policies
The Agency operates under a double entry accounting system and prepares financial statements on an accrual basis.
The accounting supports the preparation of the Financial Statements in accordance with
International Financial Reporting Standards for Small and Medium-sized Entities, which comprise of standards and interpretations approved by the International Accounting Standards Board.
The Financial Statements are expressed in Barbados dollars, the primary currency of the Agency.
The Programme is not subject to taxation.
Deferred operating income is recognised at the date of the statement of financial position.
Operating deferred revenue is recognised in the statement of income when it is realised or realisable and earned.
Funds from the EDF are recognised at their fair value.
The section below will highlight the accounting process which supports and is subsequent to the procurement process .
1) Preparation of Documents for Payment
After selection of a vendor and adherence to the procurement procedures, inclusive of the requisite approvals, the payments are forwarded to Finance for processing. The following steps provide an overview of how documents are prepared prior to payment.
The Officer creates a Purchase Order/Payment Request via the Purchase Order Module, based on the amount quoted from the selected vendor.
The Officer acquires an invoice, which is entered (received) into the Purchase Orders module in
ACCPAC. The entering of the invoice clears the Purchase Order, noted in 1.1, thereby releasing the commitment which was formed as a result of entering the quotation in ACCPAC.
The relevant documentation is then submitted to Finance for payment. This includes Purchase
Orders/Payment Requests, invoices, quotations, contracts, reports etc.
Review of Documents for Payment
Finance reviews documentation to ensure compliance with the procedures written in the
Operations Manual, prior to payment. In the event that submissions are not in compliance with the procedures, the documents are returned to the respective officers for corrective action with the shortcomings noted.
Payment vouchers are prepared and reviewed at various levels, in accordance with the segregation of duties. Payments are not released until all levels of approval have been met. After processing the payments are dispatched.
The Day End Report is processed in the Purchase Order module three times a week (Monday,
Wednesday, and Friday) which posts the invoices in the system. (This process records the invoice to facilitate payment afterwards.
Two batches are created simultaneously after Day End processing is completed, the first of which is an invoice batch in the Accounts Payable, which credits the invoices to the payable account and debits the amounts to the Purchase Order Clearing Account. The second batch is created in the General Ledger and this posts the amounts (received) to expense accounts and credits the Purchase Order Clearing account, which effectively completes the double entry between invoices and receipts.
After Day End, payments are keyed into ACCPAC via the Accounts Payable module.
Exceptions to the Day End process are keyed as miscellaneous payments and posted directly to the General Ledger rather than being passed through the payable account first. These exceptions relate primarily to per diems.
3) Financial Statements
After the steps preformed above the:-
Commitments are posted via the Commitment Accounting module in ACCPAC. This process ensures that all Purchase Orders not yet cleared in the system are accounted for.
Within the Commitment Accounting Module, there is a report called the Snapshot
Report, which provides a summary of all Purchase Orders not cleared, according to the period chosen.
The Financial Report is processed via the Financial Reporter tab in the General Ledger module in ACCPAC.
The reports are reviewed to ensure that expensed amounts are within budget prior to internal distribution.
The Financial Report forms part of the monthly, quarterly and annual reporting along with the technical reports which are distributed to key internal and external stakeholders.
The Organisation derives its revenue primarily from two (2) sources. These sources are donor funding and contributions from CARIFORUM States. As such the budget preparation approach is dependent on the nature and source of funds.
Donor funded budgeting employs a zero based budgeting format with activities built out in detail and assigned indicative costs with accommodation made for contingency.
The budgetary process commences with comprehensive planning sessions which look at the broad strategic planning and project implementation strategies and identifies proposed actions for the year. In preparation for the sessions, the Management and Technical Officers submit proposed activities which are presented for discussion. The submissions are adjusted based on the feedback and decisions from the meetings.
The Work Programme and Budget sessions also take into consideration an assessment of the relevant risks that would have a possible impact on implementation.
The Work Programme and Budgets are prepared internally on an annual basis and are approved at the level of the Board of Directors. The Delegation of the European Commission participates in the discussion and provides feedback on the Work Programme and Budgets.
The Budgets are based on a classification system that is derived from the global Work Programme and
Budget which is approved under a particular EDF i.e 9 th EDF, 10 th EDF etc. For example under the 10 th EDF
Regional Private Sector Development Programme (FED/2011/260-647), the Contribution Agreement is signed by Caribbean Export and the Delegation in Barbados.
The document includes the 5 year budget which has been discussed with the Delegation, Caribbean Export and the CARICOM Secretariat. The global approved Budget as noted in the Contribution Agreement is then utilised as the basis to formulate the classification for the annual budgets.
In accordance with the Operations Manual procedures are in place to address budget line variances with the requisite approvals. In addition, the EDF procedures dealing with budget modifications would take precedence where applicable.
EDF Chart of Accounts
Caribbean Export has a very extensive chart of accounts. Each section of the Work Programme is broken down into sub-components, and budget lines are created in accordance with these components. The various components of the budget lines are noted below:-
Segment one (1) is entitled the account number and represents a specific category of expense in
Segment two (2) is the location where the relevant project fund is inserted.
The remainder of the budget line is then comprised of the component, sub-component, activity, country code and sector code. The finished product is composed of quantitative and qualitative characters that
represents the particular section of the work programme where transactions are posted and charged.
Please see below an example of the make-up of a budget line.
Component CI Competitiveness & Innovation
Priority Niche Sectors
Trade Missions and Meetings
PILLAR 3 – INDEPENDENT EXTERNAL AUDIT
A statutory audit of Financial Statements is considered to be an assurance engagement. In an assurance engagement the auditors evaluate a particular subject matter such as the ‘Financial Statements’, which are the responsibility of a third party. The role of such a third party in this case is played by the Caribbean Export
Development Agency through its management and directors, so as to provide a level of assurance about the relevant subject matter.
The main purpose of a statutory audit is to increase the confidence of and reduce the risk to the users of
Financial Statements. For Caribbean Export another main purpose would be to provide a level of assurance to its donor agencies as well as reporting organisations to which resources have been expended. These resources have been allocated in a sound manner with accordance to internationally accepted accounting standards.
The statutory audit for the Agency is based on two important concepts, that is, Stewardship and
Accountability. These concepts are governed by international principles such as company law, auditing standards and codes of professional ethics. Audits conducted under the ambit of professional standards add quality to the audit itself and to the opinions consequently expressed. Thus auditors have important responsibilities according to these standards and must form an independent opinion on the true and fair presentation of the Financial Statements.
The International Auditing and Assurance Standards Board, issues International Standards by which the audits are conducted. Our local auditors Ernst & Young represent an international auditing firm and thus would comply with the relevant standards in the performance of their audit accordingly.
The external independent audit is performed on the ‘Annual Financial Statements’ as required under the
‘Agreement Establishing the Caribbean Export Development Agency’. This agreement is an intergovernmental arrangement signed by the fifteen (15) CARIFORUM member states. The audit report is prepared by the International Auditor Firm Ernst & Young which is then signed by the Chairman of the
Board of Directors of Caribbean Export, or a designate (a member of the Board of Directors of Caribbean
Export). The signed report is lastly presented to the CARIFORUM Directorate and the Delegation of the
European Commission for Barbados and the Eastern Caribbean.
The Financial Statements prepared have been presented in accordance with the Financial Rules and
Regulations of the Agency, which have in turn been approved by the European Union Delegation in accordance with the recommendation of the ECORYS report, issued on 23 December 2006 by an Evaluator appointed by the European Union. The above mentioned rules and regulations were subsequently reconfirmed through a more recent report by MOORE STEPHENS L.L.P. which was issued on 12 January,
2011. In addition to this, the Financial Statements are presented in accordance with the International
Financial Reporting Standard (IFRS) for small and medium-sized entities.
The Financial Statements are also prepared in accordance with the Generally Accepted Accounting Principles
(GAAP). In this regard, the presentation of the audited Financial Statements slightly differs from the IFRS for
Small and Medium-sized Entities. This difference is only in terms of how it relates to the accounting treatment for capital items which are expensed and not capitalized as well as accounting for realized gains and losses. Current European Development Fund procedures, as noted under Article 2.7 of Annex II: General
Conditions applicable to the European Community, Contribution Agreement with International Organisations, do not allow foreign exchange losses to be carried by the programme and hence are not included in the
Financial Statements. Consequently, for the accounts to be stated under IFRS for Small and Medium-sized
Entities, the foreign Exchange loss or gain would have to be included in the Financial Statements.
The Auditor Firm Ernst & Young is one of the ‘big’ five (5) international auditing firms. The company’s local operations, is a member of the international accounting body which in turn is a member of the International
Federation of Accountants (IFAC). The audit is performed under IFRS regulations except as noted in the section directly above.
The auditor firm is governed by a ‘Code of Ethics’ which establishes the fundamental ethical principles for auditors with regard to integrity, objectivity, independence, professional competence and due care, confidentiality, professional behavior and technical standards. As a member of the IFAC, the applicable principles under which they operate would be compliant with the IFAC code of Ethics for Professional
Accountants issued by the IFAC’s International Standards Board for Accountants.
Another fundamental principle of auditing is that of ‘Independence’ a value which is fully respected and adhered to within the auditing process. The auditor firm Ernst & Young is completely independent of the
Caribbean Export Development Agency and its operations. The only service provided by the firm for
Caribbean Export is the Audit function. In this regard, members of the Caribbean Export management team are also independent of the audit firm.
Caribbean Export is subjected to an audit of its annual Financial Statements. As part of this activity, the auditor’s responsibility is to express an opinion on the Financial Statements of the Agency based on their findings. The audit is conducted in accordance with International Auditing Standards. Those standards require that the auditor comply with ethical requirements to plan and perform the audit towards obtaining a reasonable assurance that the Financial Statements are free from material misstatement.
Such a review involves performing procedures which obtain evidence concerning the amounts and disclosures in the Financial Statements. The procedures utilized to achieve this depend on the auditors’ judgment. This includes the assessment of the risks for material misstatement of the Financial Statements, whether due to fraud or error. In making such risk assessments, the auditor considers the internal control environment relevant to the entity's preparation and fair presentation of the Financial Statements in order to design audit procedures that are appropriate to the circumstances.
The audit further includes evaluating the appropriateness of accounting policies used and the reasonableness of accounting estimates made by management, as an evaluation of the overall presentation of the Financial Statements. In this regard, key supporting documents to the audit process are the
‘Engagement Letter’, ‘Representation Letter’ and ‘Legal Letter’.
In the final stages, the Auditors issue their report to the Board of Directors of the Caribbean Export
Development Agency and it is disseminated to key stakeholders of the Agency as aforementioned. The
Agency has a tradition of receiving audited reports with unqualified opinions. The management of the
Caribbean Export responds promptly to any external audit findings relevant to the improvement of the
Agency’s working standards and procedures.
The Direct Assistance Grant Scheme (DAGS) is a reimbursement financial assistance programme for private sector firms and is administered by Caribbean Export Development Agency (Caribbean Export) under the 10 th
European Development Fund (EDF) Regional Private Sector Development Programme (RPSDP). The DAGS award is designed to provide direct financial assistance to export ready and exporting firms in areas of product innovation, consumer safety, export diversification and operational efficiency. The grant is awarded for an action proposed to Caribbean Export by an applicant that falls within the normal framework of the beneficiary’s activities, as well as the overall objectives of the RPSDP. The applicant may act individually or with co-applicant(s). The action must be clearly identified, and no action may be split for the purpose of evading compliance with the rules laid down in the Guidelines and Procedures for a Call. A grant beneficiary is responsible for implementing and financing the action and owns the results.
Caribbean Export employs strict rules to administer the legal and regulatory framework in which grants are publicized, managed and awarded. These rules help to ensure that suitably qualified applicants are chosen without bias and there is full transparency appropriate to the award and use of European Union funds (i.e.
10 th EDF). The legal and regulatory framework used by the Agency to administer and implement DAGS is adopted from the Practical Guide to Contract Procedures for EU External Actions (March 2013) and is defined in the DAGS Guidelines and Procedures.
The legal and regulatory framework for grants is reinforced by seven (7) important pillars which include programming, transparency, equal treatment, non-cumulation, non-retroactivity, co-financing and nonprofit. The adoption of these principles ensures appropriate measures are used to avoid conflicts of interest throughout the grants award process. DAGS grants are programmed in its annual work programme with clearly defined objectives, hence the provision of the Guidelines for both the Regular and Accelerated
The DAGS programme is publicised widely and is accessible via Caribbean Export’s website ( www.caribexport.com
), the press and other print media, Caribbean Export’s client database and a wide network of stakeholders, such as the European Commission Delegation, Business Support Organisations and firms in 15
CARIFORUM countries. All grants awarded in the course of the annual work programme are published publicly with due observance of the requirements of confidentiality and security. Grant award information published includes, the name of the beneficiary, country, sector/industry and the maximum amount of funding. Individual amounts awarded to beneficiaries are not publicised, however, the grand total awarded to all beneficiaries is publicised.
The DAGS programme is completely impartial and provides clear, objective and non-discriminatory criteria for selecting evaluation committee members, as well as evaluating, selecting and awarding grants. The checks and balances of the programme ensure that no single beneficiary may receive more than one grant financed by the 10 th EDF RPSDP for a given action.
The DAGS programme, as a rule only covers costs incurred after the date on which the grant contract is signed by Caribbean Export and the beneficiary. Therefore, no grant may be awarded retroactively for actions already completed. A beneficiary may request an early start to an action that is time specific, where the applicant can demonstrate in writing the reason(s) for their request.
As the DAGS programme is a reimbursement grant funding facility it requires the applicant to finance its entire cost of the action. Caribbean Export, under the DAGS programme as a rule does not finance the entire cost of the applicant’s action, but finances up to a maximum of €30,000.00 (i.e. 70% of the project cost).
No grant may give rise to profits; firms should only balance income and expenditure for the action. In the case of a grant for an action, profit is defined as a surplus of receipts over the costs incurred by the beneficiary when the request is made for final payment. The non-profit rule applies to the action and not necessarily to the grant beneficiary.
DAGS utilises an ‘open call for proposals’. All applicants are free to submit a grant application in response to the published Call for Proposals Guidelines. This mechanism is utilised for grant award amounts ranging from
€5,000 - €30,000. In addition, Caribbean Export delivers direct assistance to priority sectors up to a maximum of €10,000.
DAGS is officially administered by Caribbean Export. However, in keeping with the reporting structure of the
EU Contribution Agreement 2 , Caribbean Export routinely liaises with The Office of the Deputy Regional
Authorising Officer (DRAO) and the EC Delegation of Barbados and the Eastern Caribbean in executing RPSDP activities. Caribbean Export is responsible for the overall design, publication, evaluation, and award and monitoring of DAGS. The evaluation process (selection and award) is done in collaboration with the DRAO.
Caribbean Export is in the advanced stage of implementing a Records and Information Management System to facilitate the efficient and secure sharing, updating, storage and retrieval of the Agency’s documents and records. The main features of the system are: a) Electronic – An Electronic Document and Records Management System (EDRMS) has been developed using Microsoft SharePoint to manage electronic documents and records, beginning with those created in the Microsoft Office suite. Note that SharePoint also facilitates the use of databases and an electronic archiving system. b) Paper – Physical records are being managed and stored in a central registry. Active and vital records which include Applicant/Beneficiary Register, Evaluation Committee Reports, beneficiary applications, beneficiary grant contracts and other support documentation are identified and housed in the Senior Grant Advisor’s office. Completed grant files or documentation is archived in the General Registry.
Grant applications received by e-mail are managed using a restricted account which is only accessible by the officers designated to peruse the applications at this level. Management of the grant applications takes place within the Agency’s electronic document and records management system (EDRMS). Using the EDRMS for the electronic management of the grants allows the Agency to manage the documents using the strictest records and document management principles and practices. It also allows the Agency to efficiently manage access to the grants for both internal and external stakeholders, ensuring traceability and audit trails for all users.
Grant applications may also be received in hard copy and as such the established record management system is used to document and file the entire grant process. This includes the publishing of a Call for
Proposals, preparation of guidelines and application forms, evaluation procedures, award of grants, preparation of grant contracts, secure storage of grant beneficiary contracts, monitoring of grant beneficiaries activities and reimbursement of beneficiary claims.
2 European Union Contribution Agreement With An International Organisation, Regional Private Sector Development
Publication of call for proposals
Caribbean Export publishes its Call for Proposals on its website ( www.carib-export.com
) and through a wide network of stakeholders such as the EC Delegation, business support organisations and firms in 15
CARIFORUM Countries. The Agency also utilises the press, publications (e.g. Caribbean Export’s Trade
Watch) and its extensive client database to increase awareness of the publication of a Call for Proposals.
Guidelines and Application Forms are published on the Agency’s website and are made available to its network of stakeholders to publish on their websites or in newsletters, magazine, etc. Guidelines,
Application Form and Frequently Asked Questions are published in four (4) languages (i.e. English, French,
Spanish or Dutch) and are available from Caribbean Export’s website. The eligibility criteria and eligible actions are also published on Caribbean Export’s website and in the guidelines for the Call.
The duration of a Call for Proposals is a minimum of four (4) weeks up to a maximum of six (6) weeks.
Caribbean Export uses two types of methods for applicants to submit proposals for a Call for Proposals; hard copy and electronic. The Guidelines and Application Form for a Call specifies the submission method, the language(s) and number of applications that may be submitted by the applicant. The Guidelines and
Application Form also indicates the publication and deadline dates for submitting proposals. Applications submitted electronically are received through a dedicated email address: firstname.lastname@example.org
. This email address is only valid for the duration of the Call for Proposals (CFP).
Applications submitted in hard copy are received by post, private courier service or hand delivery. The guidelines for the Call will specify where (i.e. the address) and how to send the applications. In special situations, Caribbean Export may allow applicants to submit applications for a Call through approved business support organisations to defray costs relating to courier expenses.
All DAGS proposals are registered and stored in a secure area. Active and vital records which include
Applicant/Beneficiary Register, Evaluation Committee Reports, beneficiary applications, beneficiary grant contracts and other support documentation are identified and housed securely. Completed grant files or documentation is archived in the General Registry.
The evaluation process requires all evaluation committee members to sign an impartiality and confidentiality agreement.
Receipt, registration and opening of the proposals
Caribbean Export uses the DAGS Evaluation Process Guidelines & Procedures to define the opening and evaluation of proposals. The evaluation process consists of an administrative and technical review. The
Administrative review confirms applications were submitted on/before/after the deadline and eligibility. The technical review entails the use of a prescribed evaluation grid. The Direct Assistance Grant Scheme
Guidelines and Evaluation procedures specify the circumstances under which proposals will be not be eligible or invalidated such as proposals received after the deadline or incomplete documentation.
The Evaluation Committee may request additional information from applicants where it does not result in substantive alterations after the deadline for submission.
A comprehensive Evaluation Report is then prepared. This report captures the entire evaluation process, including signed declaration of impartiality, list of applications received, completed and signed evaluation grids for applications, list of eligible applications
The role, function, composition and operating rules of the evaluation committee are defined in The Direct
Assistance Grant Scheme Guidelines and Evaluation Procedures. The Guidelines specify that the selection and evaluation is performed by more than one evaluation committee member/officer. The evaluation committee consists of Caribbean Export’s Staff and the Deputy Regional Authorising Officer (DRAO).
Members of the evaluation committee are nominated by Caribbean Export’s Management and EC
Delegation of Barbados.
The Direct Assistance Grant Scheme Evaluation Procedures states the terms and conditions for evaluation committee members, specifically impartiality and confidentiality.
The evaluation report is signed by the evaluation officers/committee. Additionally, completed evaluation girds and impartiality and confidentiality forms are also signed by all evaluation officers/committee.
The selection and award of grants are based on the application, the average score of the applicant and the available financial envelope for the Call.
The Evaluation Report captures the entire evaluation process, including signed declaration of impartiality, list of applications received, completed and signed evaluation grids for applications, list of eligible applications and list of applicants awarded grants (proposals ranked by scores and within the Call for
Proposals financial envelope). The Evaluation process and grant award system includes basic rules to limit a single beneficiary from receiving more than one grant for the same action.
The DAGS evaluation process is 65 working days. On completion of the evaluation process all applicants
(successful and unsuccessful) are notified in writing (e.g. email or letter) by Caribbean Export.
Successful applicants are provided a cover letter confirming the award and grant contract for signature to start their project. Unsuccessful applicants are notified in writing about the reasons for rejecting their application. Applicants are also encouraged to request their scores to assist them in improving the quality of their applications for future Call for Proposals.
Caribbean Export publishes its Call for Proposals grant awards on its website ( www.carib-export.com
), the press and other print media.
The grant contract specifies the beneficiary, start, duration, maximum amount of funding, title of the action, activities to be implemented, grant procedures, budget, procurement procedures, payment request, narrative and financial reports to make reimbursement claim. The grant contract Annexes II & IV both specify eligible costs, procurement rules and means of verifying actual costs incurred by the beneficiary.
Beneficiaries are encouraged to contact grant personnel for guidance on the terms and conditions of the grant contract and implementing their project activities.
PILLAR 5 - PROCUREMENT
The Caribbean Export procurement process supports the presentation of financial statements in accordance with the
International Financial Reporting Standard (IFRS) for small and medium-sized entities. In addition, the procurement procedures have been approved in accordance with the recommendations of the European Union’s appointed evaluator Moore & Stephens’ report which was issued on January 12, 2011.
The report relates to the five (5) pillar assessment and the ECORYS report issued in December 23, 2006 relating to the four (4) pillar assessment. On both occasions the Agency successfully completed the five (5) pillar and four (4) pillar assessments for which procurement was one of the pillars. The procurement process has layers of responsibility to ensure that the process is fair and transparent. Additionally, Caribbean Export has six (6) ethical norms which are expected of suppliers for both goods and services. These include impartiality and objectivity, confidentiality and value for money. The laws of Barbados govern the legal and regulatory framework where applicable for settlement, dispute and contract.
General Rules regarding Procurement
The guidelines for procurement have the following overarching objectives:-
1) Suitably qualified contractors are chosen without bias;
2) Value for money is obtained and
3) The tenets of transparency and efficiency in the use of public funds.
2.1 Transparency Measures
All procurement procedures have varying levels of transparency measures. For example, under “Prudent Shopping” an evaluation of the party selected is done by way of a memo prepared by the Project Officer and approved by the
Manager. Under the “Local Open Tender” procedure an Evaluation Committee of no less than six (6) members, of which five (5) with voting rights would make the decision.
The invitation to procure or tender is the same for all prospective suppliers. Standard contracts and formats are utilised for all parties and there is no retroactive award of contracts as the contracts are deemed to take effect from the date of the Agreement. In principle contracts are awarded which respect to the principles of transparency, equal treatment and non-discrimination. Furthermore, the contract addresses the issue of confidentiality, dispute settlement as well as rights and obligations.
Under the “Single Price Quotation”, “Direct Agreement” and “Prudent Shopping” the value for money is addressed in seeking to contract with the lowest bidder. Under the “Local Open Tender” a quality /price ratio is utilised.
2.2. Measures to avoid conflicts of interest throughout the procurement process
Within the Procurement Procedures contained in the Operations Manual of Caribbean Export, an ethics clause speaks directly to the measures to be taken in order to avoid conflicts of interest and possible consequences if a conflict of interest is detected. The clause outlines certain situations whereby a contractor and its staff must get written authorisation from Caribbean Export if a conflict of interest is possible. Finally there are certain categories of persons who are automatically disqualified from being engaged as experts by tenderers unless written approval is received from
The Agency employs two basic types of procurement for “Services” and “Tangibles” respectively.
1) Single Price Quotation
Services with values up to BD$6,000 (USD3,000) are awarded by Single Price Quotation. A contractor is selected based on the submission of a Single price quotation.
2) Direct Agreement
This procedure relates to values greater than BD$6,000 (USD3,000) and less than or equal to BD$25,000
(USD12,500). Values up to BD$15,000 (USD7,500) requires one (1) quotation and values greater than
BD$15,000 (US$7,500) require at least two (2) quotations. A contract is required in all instances. A contractor is selected based on the submission of a quotation or two (2) from separate suppliers which are compared to ensure competitive prices and a contract. No procurement notice needs to be published.
3) Prudent Shopping
This procedure relates to values greater than BDS$25,000 (USD12,500) and up to BD$250,000 (USD125,000).
At least three (3) quotations and a contract are required. A contractor is selected based on the submission of three (3) quotations from separate suppliers which are compared to ensure competitive prices and a contract.
No procurement notice needs to be published.
(The Agency has recently introduced the publishing of a Procurement Notice on its website for actions greater than BDS$200,000 (USD100,000) and other selected actions if required, as it relates to procurement utilising the Prudent Shopping procedure).
4) Open Tender Procedures
This procedure relates to values greater than BD$250,000 (USD125,000). A minimum of four (4) submissions are preferred. A Procurement Notice is published and if fewer than four (4) submissions have been received, the deadline for submission of tenders may be extended for a maximum of four (4) weeks. A contractor is selected based on the submission of four (4) quotations from separate suppliers which are compared to ensure competitive prices and a contract.
1) Single Price Quotation
Tangible items with values greater than BDS $ 50.00 (USD25.00) and less than or equal to BD$ 10,000
(USD5,000) are awarded by Single Price Quotation. A contractor is selected based on the submission of a single price quotation.
2) Direct Agreement
Tangible items greater than BDS $10,000 (USD5,000) and less than or equal to BDS $15,000 (USD7,500) are awarded by Direct Agreement. A contractor is selected based on the submission of two (2) quotations from separate suppliers which are compared to ensure competitive prices and a contract. No procurement notice needs to be published.
3) Prudent Shopping
Tangible items with a value over BDS $15,000 (USD7,500) and less than or equal to BDS $100,000 (USD50,000) are based on Prudent Shopping. A contractor is selected based on the submission of three (3) quotations from separate suppliers which are compared to ensure competitive prices and a contract. No procurement notice needs to be published.
(The Agency has recently introduced the publishing of a Procurement Notice on its website for actions greater in value than BDS80,000 (USD40,000) and other selected actions if required as it relates to procurement utilising the Prudent Shopping procedure).
4) Open Tender Procedure
Tangible items with a value greater than BDS $100,000 (USD 50,000) is awarded by Open Tender Procedure in which the procurement notice is published in the local media and the Agency’s website. A contractor is selected based on the submission of four (4) quotations from separate suppliers which are compared to ensure competitive prices and a contract.
Single Price Quotation
Values up to BD$6,000 (USD3,000)
1) The Project Officer prepares an outline of a Terms of Reference (TOR);
2) The Project Officer seeks approval from the Manager on the TOR;
3) The Project Officer considers at least two consultants and chooses the more appropriate one
4) The Project Officer prepares a Purchase Order and submits to the Manager for approval (The Project Officer verifies the availability under the budget line);
5) The Purchase Order is sent to the Finance Unit for approval regarding the utilisation of the resources and
6) The Purchase Order is returned to the Project Officer until the invoice is received from the consultant and submitted to Finance for processing.
Values greater than BD$6,000 (USD3,000) and up to BD$25,00 (USD12,500)
1) Same process for 1 and 2 as immediately noted above;
2) For values up to BDS$15,000 (USD7,500), the Project Officer considers at least two (2) candidates. For values greater than BD$15,000 (USD7,500) and up to BD$25,000 (USD12,500) the Project Officer acquires at least two
3) The Manager reviews the draft contract for approval and it is then submitted to Finance;
4) A Purchase Order is sent to Finance for the approval of the utilization of the resources and a contract number is assigned;
5) The contract is reviewed by the Legal Officer and Finance and
6) The contract is signed by the Agency and the supplier. (Two (2) copies of the contract are prepared).
Values greater than BDS$25,000 (USD12,500) and up to BDS$250,000 (USD125,000
In addition to the procedures noted under the “Single Price Quotation” and “Direct Agreement”, the following applies to this process.
1) At least three (3) suppliers must be selected and
2) At least three (3) quotations must be received.
In utilising the procedures if the lowest bid is not selected a memo must be prepared stating the reasons for the selection.
Single Price Quotation
1) The officer contacts at least two (2) suppliers and chooses a supplier;
2) The Officer prepares a Purchase Order;
3) The Manager reviews and approves the Purchase Order and
4) The Purchase Order is submitted to Finance for the approval of the utilisation of the resources.
5) The Purchase Order is returned to the Project Officer until the Invoice is received and submitted to Finance for processing,
1) Same process as aforementioned, except that two (2) quotations are required;
2) The contract is reviewed by the Legal Officer and Finance
3) The contract is signed by the Agency and the Supplier.
1) Same process as aforementioned. In this instance three (3) quotations must be provided;
2) The officer must prepare a memo listing and analysing the options and justifying the recommendation;
3) The Manager must review and sign the memo;
4) The contract is reviewed by the Legal Officer and Finance
5) The contract is signed by the Agency and the Supplier.
SERVICES & TANGIBLE
The evaluation team is the Project Officer and the Manager.
Terms of Reference, Quotation, Invoice, Purchase Order, Budget, Expenditure Report, Contract, Memo
Local Open Tender
Values greater than BDS$250,000 (USD125,000) for services and BDS$100,000 (USD 50,000)
The Tender is launched by publishing a procurement notice in the media and the Agency’s website.
1) The Agency publishes procurement notices for all service contracts greater than BDS$250,000 (USD125,000) and for tangible contracts greater than BDS$125,000 (USD62,500).
2) Publication of Notices
Procurement notices are published locally through the appropriate media and in electronic form on the website;
The Open Tender is open to all eligible Contractors locally and internationally on an equal basis;
A period of a minimum of 30 days must exist between the date of publication of the procurement notice in the local press and the deadline for receipts of tenders and
In addition where fewer than four (4) applications have been received the deadline for submission may be extended to a maximum of four (4) weeks.
3) Establishment of shortlists from publication of procurement notices.
The shortlisting of suppliers is carried out by a panel appointed by Caribbean Export possessing the technical and administrative capabilities;
The short list should comprise of at least four (4) eligible suppliers and
Where fewer than four (4) eligible suppliers are shortlisted, the panel shall provide justification to the
Evaluation Committee in the evaluation report.
4) Establishment of shortlists from letters of invitation.
The Agency may invite submissions from suitably qualified candidates. The procedures applied at three (3) above relating to procurement notices shall apply here.
5) Deadline for submission of tenders
Tenders must reach the Agency at the address noted no later than the date and time shown in the invitation letter.
6) Submission of tenders
Tenders must be submitted in accordance with the double envelope system (‘Envelope A – Technical offer,
Envelope B – Financial offer).
The system ensures that the technical quality of the tender is considered independently of the price.
7) Evaluation Committee
Tenders are opened by an Evaluation Committee. Members of the committee must sign a confidentially statement and must declare any conflict of interest which would make them ineligible to participate in the process.
The Evaluation Committee is appointed by Caribbean Export comprising a voting Chairperson, a non-voting
Secretary and an even number of voting members (minimum of four)
The Chairperson is responsible for coordinating the evaluation process and for ensuring confidentially and transparency. The Secretary of the Committee is responsible for carrying out all administrative tasks connected with the evaluation procedure.
Evaluation of Offers
There is a formal tender opening session.
The Committee checks for compliance of tenders. Major issues of non-compliance results in the rejection of the tender.
The Committee examines the technical offers and the financial offers remains sealed. (only tenderers with an average score of at least 70 points qualify for the financial evaluation)
Upon completion of the technical evaluation, the eligible financial offers are then reviewed.
The most economically advantageous tender is established by weighing technical quality against price on a
70/30 basis, that is the score awarded to the technical offer is multiplied by 0.7 and that of the financial offer by 0.3.
Award of the Tender
Notification of the Successful Tender
Caribbean Export notifies the successful tenderer in writing on the basis of the approved evaluation report from the Evaluation Committee. The period of validity is given due consideration.
The award criteria serve to identify the most economically advantageous tender, which covers both the technical quality and price of the tender.
The Operations Manual provides recourse for tenderers to file a procurement complaint. At any time, a tenderer may file a claim which is reviewed by an independent committee, which is separate and apart from persons who are taking part in the tender process, including the evaluation committee. This independent review committee shall include representatives from Caribbean Export, the National Authorising Office and the Agency’s legal counsel. The complaint may be made by the tenderer at any time during the procurement process until the award of the contract and the independent review committee must respond to the complaint within a reasonable timeframe. A resolution reached by the Committee shall be binding on all parties.
Tenders are mainly received in hard copy format and are secured within the relevant department issuing the tender.
The Agency personnel who issued the tender are responsible for overseeing the receipt and access of applications.
Proposals received are time stamped to confirm delivery whether before or after the deadline. After the evaluation and selection process, hard copy tenders are indexed, boxed and secured in the Registry.
Caribbean Export also has the capacity to configure the electronic system to reject late proposals automatically. An
Electronic Document and Records Management System (EDRMS) has been developed using Microsoft SharePoint to manage electronic documents and records including tenders sent via email. Receipt of any tender electronically by
Caribbean Export will be uploaded into the relevant SharePoint Document Site the responsible for electronic filing.
Procurement Notice, Shortlist report, Tender Opening Report, Evaluation Report, Contract, Letter of notification to successful tenderer
Tender Dossier which includes:-
The instructions to tenderers, Draft contract agreement, Technical specifications, Letter of invitation, Technical evaluation grid and financial evaluation grid.