An electronic auction to find suppliers for the second phase of the One Tablet Per Child scheme will be delayed to May 29 from some time in April, according to a source from the procurement committee.
The source said the winning bidders are likely to be local companies with a strong connection to the Office of Basic Education Commission (Obec), including previous Obec project winners.
Local companies expected to join the auction are system integrators and computer assemblers such as Songkhla Finishing, Supreme Computer, SVOA and Samart Corporation.
The winner of the project's first phase, Shenzhen Scope Scientific Development, the maker of Scopad tablets, will probably join the auction.
Obec has posted the draft terms of reference on the government's procurement website from April 10-18.
After receiving feedback, the committee will revise the ToR and fix the e-auction date for May 29.
Auction winners are required to deliver tablets within 90 days of the contract being signed. The source said the draft ToR would mandate delivery of 25% of the agreed number of tablets within 20 days.
"It's quite difficult to deliver such a huge volume of tablets in a short period. If their production is not well prepared with Chinese factories in advance, these local bidders won't be able to supply tablets as promised," the source said.
Moreover, the draft ToR also require bidders to have some experience of supplying computers worth at least 100 million baht in one direct contract with government or state agencies.
In the draft ToR, there will be four zones for tablet supply and the auctions will be held on the same day. The supplier can win more than one zone.
The first zone covers the Central and South regions for Prathom 1 students with 431,105 units.
The second zone covers the North and Northeast for Prathom 1 students with 373,637 units.
The third zone comprises the Central and South regions for Mathayom 1 students with 426,683 units.
The fourth zone covers the North and Northeast for Mathayom 1 students with 402,889 units.