OGC cuts broadband red tape

The Office of Government Commerce has unveiled a strategy designed to cut the red tape affecting public sector broadband...

The Office of Government Commerce has unveiled a strategy designed to cut the red tape affecting public sector broadband procurement.

Launched at the Public Sector Expo event in London on 14 May, the Broadband Solutions Framework Agreement enables councils and government departments to procure broadband technology without a tendering process.

The move comes two years after e-envoy Andrew Pinder first mooted the idea of the aggregating public sector broadband demand to encourage suppliers to roll out fast internet services to areas that would otherwise be considered uncommercial.

Peter Gershon, chief executive of the OGC, said the deal "reduces the time and effort required in sourcing broadband products by offering quality goods and services at value-for-money prices without the need for separate tendering processes".

The six companies chosen by the OGC to offer broadband services under the agreement are BT, Easynet, Fujitsu, Kingston, Synetrix and Telewest.

Established in 2000, the OGC is responsible for civil central government procurement policy and best practice in a range of areas including IT and construction.

The agency also oversees the Gateway Review process for managing major government projects. To date, more than 250 projects have been subject to review.

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