The Action Plan (AP) of the Region of East Macedonia and Thrace was developed during Phase 1 of the project. The Joint Secretariat approved it in November 2021.
During the same period, the Region of East Macedonia and Thrace organized events and meetings with stakeholders to inform them of CircPro results and outcomes. Also, the Region always managed to have an open discussion with all involved bodies and exchanged views on how they can use and take advantage of presented experiences and good practices from other stakeholders of project partners and, most important, on how to implement circular and green supplies by contracting authorities in the Region.
During the next period of Phase 2 of the project and until 31/05/2022, the Region focused on gathering and updating information and training material for supporting Action 1: Enhanced capacity for utilizing Green Public Procurement (GPP) and Action 2: Introducing Circular Public Procurement (CPP) in interventions of the Regional Operational Programme of the approved Regional Action Plan. More specifically, the Region of East Macedonia and Thrace worked towards elaborating and enhancing capacity for utilizing GPP (Action 1 of AP) by updating the produced Regional Guidebook, translated and printed in Greek for dissemination to local stakeholders and involved bodies. To implement Action 2, the Region held meetings with the Programme's Managing Authority to activate relevant stakeholders.
The period of Phase 2, from 01/06/2022 until the end of the project, was dedicated to fully developing the activities of the Regional AP. For implementing Action 1, the Region organized two interactive educational workshops to inform and sensitize the public and the private sector and all interested bodies about the procedures that should be followed in GPP and CPP. These workshops contributed to the skills development of contracting authorities and contractors of the Region and raised awareness about the benefits and opportunities of implementing GPP and CPP.
In addition, with these educational and informative training activities, market representatives and entrepreneurs realized the intention of the Greek public sector to proceed with the "greening" of public procurements and the benefits that arise for the various sectors from the certification of products and the promotion of environmentally friendly production as well as the adaptation of the Greek market to the new data.
The Region of East Macedonia and Thrace proceeded in meetings with the Managing Authority of the Regional Operational Programme to achieve the objectives of the circular economy in the policy tool of the Region and introduce the means of prioritization and interventions in green contracts and for promoting and accelerating the implementation of the CPP criteria in the Region. Also, the Region targeted to introduce relevant regulations and objectives in the specialization of the actions of the Regional Operational Programme and the methodology and criteria of evaluation of the operations.
All the above-implemented activities and actions of the Regional AP had one direct target of influencing the regional policy instrument of the Region of East Macedonia and Thrace, the Regional Operational Programme. By introducing and implementing the Regional AP, the Region of East Macedonia and Thrace managed to affect the Regional Operational Programme by introducing Circular Procurement as a horizontal principle in the specialization and implementation of interventions of the Regional Operational Programme for the creation of suitable project pipeline to achieve Policy Objectives for Circular Economy in the Region and thus achieving better governance with circular procurement.
The Regional AP has succeeded in influencing the Operational Programme of the Region by ensuring that during its implementation, the Managing Authority will provide the strategic use of CPP criteria, where it's possible, in all public procurements' procedures and, more specifically, in intended interventions that include supplies or services for the following goods:
- Photocopy and writing paper
- Computers and monitors
- Imaging equipment
- Indoor lighting - LED lamps
- Air conditioners
- Textile products
- Electrical and electronic equipment used in the field of healthcare
- Road construction design, construction and maintenance
- Design of office buildings, construction and management.
To this end, and following the institutional framework, it will include in the Regional Operation Programme invitations to the respective National Strategy for GPP and will encourage beneficiaries to use quality and life cycle cost criteria when designing their projects. In particular - and where it is legally and institutionally possible- it will enable the beneficiaries to integrate green and more environmental and social criteria and innovation incentives into the public procurement procedures of the projects.