The start of pre-commercial procurement: innovations are needed both for physicians and for the bank. There have been 15 innovative projects approved of the state co-financed by the EU SF investment measure ‘Pre-Commercial Procurement LT’ to support local enterprises and public sector organizations.

‘Pre-commercial procurement’ (PCP) is an approach within the public procurement of innovation, developed specifically for the procurement of R&D services rather than actual goods and services; if the goods or services developed during the R&D phase are to be procured, this would need to be based on a separate procurement process.

Pre-commercial procurement is aimed at acquiring new products that are not yet available on the market or where major improvements to the existing product are required. The main purpose of these purchases is to foster the development and adaptation of innovation to the public sector of public interest and to help new products or services to emerge in new markets. In this way, the state becomes a smart buyer, and businesses are given the opportunity to share a risk with the state.

These 15 approved projects were submitted by a total of 12 contracting authorities - state-owned enterprises or institutions, i.e. two projects were submitted by ‘Santara clinic’ of Vilnius University Hospital, AB ‘Energijos Skirstymo Operatorius’ (ESO) and ‘Kaunas City Hospital’ and municipality.

Up to 85% of the total eligible costs of a project is co-financed under the ‘Pre-Commercial Procurement LT’ measure, and the remaining 15% will be awarded to the contracting authority and project partners. The form of financing with the measure is a non-refundable subsidy.

‘Santara clinic’ of Vilnius University Hospital seeks to create two products. It is an innovative technology for limb injuries for experienced patients and “iLempa” intelligent high-resolution illumination system for the operating area.

The ‘Center of Registers’ has a project that will create the technology for storing and managing 3D data necessary for the efficient implementation of economic development projects.

The ‘Inland Waterways Authority’ seeks to create an inland waterway high-speed passenger ship, the ‘Lithuanian Road Administration’ - a mixture of modified nano-materials, increasing the sustainability of road surface coatings, and the ‘Lithuanian Sea Museum’ - a methodology for animal-based research, the ‘Police Department’ - a virtual reality program and an interactive educational game "Be safe on the road!". The ‘Bank of Lithuania’ wants to create a bit coin platform and service "LBChain".

The ESO wants to implement two projects - the creation of new technologies for the diagnosis and defect detection of electric lines and a service to determine the causes of failure of electric meters according to to legally approved methodology. "Lithuanian Railways" - the creation of a device for monitoring investment projects, maintenance of electricity networks and service breaks on railway sections.

Kaunas city municipality seeks to develop technologies that measure real-time traffic flows and avoid congestion, as well as an intelligent transport management system that helps to recharge the hybrid gearbox power mechanism.

The aim of the Druskininkai region municipality is to create innovative technologies for psychological well-being of the society. Vilnius city municipality - to optimise traffic flows in the central part of the capital Vilnius.

‘Agency for Science, Innovation and Technology’ (MITA) is entitled to be a coordinating authority for pre-commercial procurement. MITA assess documents and gives permission for the performance takes part in the meetings of the commission of contracting authority, consults (contracting authorities and bidders, co-funds, organizes training, monitors, collects, systematises and analyses data on accomplished and ongoing PCP. MITA has received a total of 69 project applications so far to develop new products or to substantially improve existing ones with support the ‘Pre-Commercial Procurement LT’ measure. However, about a half of them assessed did not meet pre-commercial procurement criteria. Actually, the first pre-commercial procurement “Creation of day/night surveillance device to be used for intelligence purposes” was launched last year and is still undergoing.

Image: © Herkus Milaševičius

Applications for financing will be submitted by the Contracting Authority to the ‘Lithuanian Business Support Agency‘ (LVPA) until 2nd October 2017. Until then applicants have to prepare procurement documents, in some cases, sign a joint venture agreement with their development partners.