Jacob Rees-Mogg to reduce government focus on ethical contracts Business

Jacob Rees-Mogg is preparing to shake up government outsourcing so that it focuses more on maximizing taxpayer resources and less on so-called ethical principles.

The Minister of Government Efficiency wants to reduce the weight given to “social value” in procurement.

Measurement currently encompasses a wide range of non-financial metrics, including carbon emissions, jobs, and impact on local communities.

Mr Rees-Mogg has held meetings with major contractors to outline the changes, which also aim to reweight government contracts in favor of smaller suppliers who he says are negatively affected by social value criteria.

A Whitehall source told The Telegraph a key consideration is “how social value is defined”. Critics say the current broad definition favors large companies with well-staffed public affairs and policy departments.

Mr Rees-Mogg has taken control of public procurement via his new role as Minister for Brexit Opportunities and Government Effectiveness, to which he was appointed in February.

Mr Rees-Mogg succeeds Lord Agnew as Government Procurement Minister, who resigned earlier this year after accusing the Government of failing to crack down on coronavirus loan fraud.

Nick Davies, outsourcing researcher for the Institute for Government, said the changes could conflict with government policy in other areas.

Mr Davies said: “Reform to make public procurement more accessible to small businesses is welcome, but a greater focus on price rather than social value risks having the opposite effect. It’s also unclear how it fits into the government’s net zero policy and direction.”

The changes are part of a broader movement to reassess the role of ethics in purchasing and investing. Earlier this month, The Telegraph reported that Downing Street was planning to launch a charm offensive on behalf of UK defense firms over fears that ethical investing posed a ‘fundamental risk to UK sovereignty’ in the wake of Russia’s assault on Ukraine.

Sheridan Westlake, one of Downing Street’s longest-serving politicians, is in charge of strategy following warnings that companies have been reluctant to bid on work on nuclear weapons and other nuclear resources. defense for fear of being excluded by “ethics” officials. “City funds.

The Cabinet Office has been approached for comment.

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This notice was published: 2022-03-19 17:28:34

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