The Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) has formed an 11-member bid evaluation committee to monitor the acquisition of IT security tools and services in order to modernize its databases and protect them from hacker assaults. In the first phase, FBR plans to purchase Oracle ACS services for database security implementation, VMware virtualization, backup and recovery, secure e-mail, a web gateway, WAF, ADC, security incident, event management system, and the establishment of a security operation center, perimeter firewall, and Microsoft Windows server.
Furthermore, the department will procure privileged access management and SQL database access management, network monitoring solution and log analyses server, backup expansion, Commvault licenses, IRIS middleware solution, WebLogic/JBoss, middleware OS, RHEL8.X or Oracle, Linux, Exadata expansion/CC, and SD-WAN solution for FBR in the second phase.
The bid evaluation committee’s responsibilities include technical and financial evaluation of submitted documents, ensuring that bidding documents are free of technical omissions and deviations, critical review of submitted bid specifications, quantities, or cost estimates, and preparing an evaluation report in accordance with Rule 35 of the PPRA Rules 2004. The committee must conclude its review and provide its recommendation within one week of the bid opening.
FBR had previously alerted the procurement assessment committee in November 2021, and Chairman FBR recently authorised an inquiry to conduct a fact-finding probe into failed emergency procurement attempts totaling $26 million through the World Bank’s Pakistan Raises Revenue initiative. The Cabinet’s Economic Coordination Committee also authorised a Technical Supplementary Grant of Rs. 3.8 billion for the purchase of hardware and software for the upgrade of the FBR data system.
It’s worth noting that Pakistan and the World Bank recently signed a $400 million Pakistan Raises Revenue programme aimed at raising Pakistan’s tax-to-GDP ratio to 17%, increasing the number of active taxpayers to 3.5 million, lowering the compliance burden of paying taxes, and improving customs control efficiency.