"We heard of cases where systems integrators [large IT suppliers] had involved SMEs in the bidding process so they could demonstrate innovation, only for the SME to be dropped after award of contract."
The committee said that the few large suppliers that dominate government IT may comprise an "oligopoly". Said the committee: "Whether or not this constitutes a cartel in legal terms, it has led to the perverse situation in which the governments have wasted an obscene amount of public money."
The committee recommended that the G
The committee recommended that the Government "urgently commission an independent, external investigation to determine whether there is substance to these serious allegations of anti-competitive behaviour and collusion. The Government should also provide a trusted and independent escalation route to enable SMEs confidentially to raise allegations of malpractice."
"As the trade body for the ICT sector, we want to make it clear that this is not the case and cartels do not exist in our industry. On the contrary, this is a highly competitive market. Intellect would cooperate with any investigation into such allegations, but we believe it would be a waste of public money."