St. Vincent & the Grenadines became a member of CARICOM on 1st May 1974. For details on the economy, political structure and demographics see the World Fact Book - St. Vincent & the Grenadines.
The Ministry of Finance (MOF) is empowered by the Financial and Audit Act 1964 to regulate procurement. MOF issues Financial Regulations (FR) and Financial (Stores) Regulations by virtue of (i) Financial and Stores Rules of the Windward Islands 1952; (ii) Manual of Tender Procedures (issued on November 21, 1967 as Statutory Rules No. 101-114). As executive acts, these rules can be easily changed by the Minister of Finance and do not reflect established government procurement principles and practices. Existing rules promote selective bidding, excessive discretion in decision making, and do not address issues and aspects which are key to efficiency, fairness, transparency and accountability, such as, for example:public bid opening; qualifications on suppliers and contractors; award to the lowest evaluated bidder; bid protests; debarment of bidders; disclosure of procurement rules; and maintenance of procurement records. In addition, conditions for use of various procurement methods are not defined and there are no separate rules for procurement of consulting services.
On 15th October 2008 St.Vincent & the Grenadines signed the CARIFORUM EC - EPA which contains public procurement conditions for the first time in a multi-lateral trade agreement in the ACP. The conditions require transparency in all Government Procurement above a threshold of approximately 164,000 Euros.
St. Vincent & the Grenadines has not ratified the Inter-American Convention on Mutual Assistance in Criminal Matters nor the UN Convention on Corruption or the CARICOM Mutual Legal Assistance Treaty on Serious Criminal Matters.
Corruption Perceptions Index (CPI) 2009 Ranking measures the perceived level of public-sector corruption in 180 countries and territories around the world. The CPI is a "survey of surveys", based on 13 different expert and business surveys. St. Vincent & the Grenadines ranked 31st in the CPI 2009 with a score of 6.4.