In 2018, UNICEF’s supply and logistics function directly procured more than $3.486 billion worth of goods and services for children in 150 countries and areas. UNICEF managed a total of $641.9 million worth of supplies via its in-country warehouses.
UNICEF procured $2.378 billion worth of goods in 2018. The eight highest value commodity groups appear on these pages with some of the most common items procured within each group listed.
In 2018, UNICEF’s procurement of services reached a value of $1.108 billion. The six largest categories account for 62 per cent of the total value of contracting for services.
Countries from which procurement exceeded $20 million (based on country of invoice)
UNICEF achieved a total of $351.2 million worth of savings for UNICEF donors and partners in 2018, exceeding our 2018 target by more than $91 million.
To provide longer-term visibility on levels of demand for essential products, UNICEF used strategic procurement, price and information transparency, special contracting terms and multi-year arrangements. Partner collaborations such as joint forecasting and coordinated procurement were strengthened through these activities. This enabled suppliers to plan and scale up production, increasing the availability of affordable supplies for every child.
In 2017 UNICEF projected $690 million in price savings for strategic supplies over the period 2018–2021, and achieved savings of $351.2 million in 2018 alone. These projections and the 2018 figure are lower than those achieved in the period 2012–2017. Over the previous years, UNICEF worked with suppliers to realize significant price reductions, particularly on childhood vaccines. Prices were brought to more affordable levels and products made more available by working together to shape some of these strategic product markets. Today, UNICEF is increasingly shifting its focus from price savings to a more holistic procurement impact. This will consider both savings and other value elements such as social and environmental impact, with the objective of ensuring sustained availability and accessibility of strategic supplies for children.
In 2018, UNICEF collaborated with 12 other United Nations agencies to identify leading practices in defining and quantifying procurement impact, and to agree on a shared approach across agencies. This approach is expected to enable UNICEF to measure – beyond price considerations – its ability to harness the power of markets and reduce market barriers that prevent children from accessing essential supplies. This includes considerations such as quality, availability, acceptability, competition, adaptability and delivery as value-added.