11 as a part of the promotion of small business

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new website called "SUB-Net" where prime contractors post subcontracting opportunities. 11. As a part of the promotion of small business participation in procurement, a number of set- asides and pricing preferences are in place, including the Very Small Business Program, expected to terminate on 30 September 2003, which grants preferences to very small suppliers in acquisitions with an estimated value exceeding US$2,500 but not greater than US$50,000, when the contracting office is located or the contract performed within a designated SBA district. The HUBZone Empowerment Contracting Program provides for federal contracts preferences, including set-asides, sole source awards, and price evaluations in unrestricted procurements for qualified small businesses located in historically underutilized business zones in an effort to increase employment opportunities, investment, and economic development in those areas. Agencies must consider HUBZone small business concerns before any other suppliers, between certain thresholds. For acquisitions beyond thresholds and open to competition, price preferences may be granted, calculated by adding a factor of 10% to all offers. The Small Business Competitiveness Demonstration Program, established by the Small Business Competitiveness Demonstration Program Act of 1988 (P.L. 100-656), consists of two major components: unrestricted competition in four designated industry groups, in which small business set asides are not applied; and enhanced small business participation in ten agency-targeted industry categories. 233 229 Australia, Belgium, Canada, Denmark, Egypt, France, Germany, Greece, Israel, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, and the United Kingdom. Products from Austria and Finland may, on a purchase-by-purchase basis, be also exempted. 230 FAR, Subp. 225-872. Available online at: http://www.acq.osd.mil/dp/dars/dfars/html/r20020531/ 225_8.htm#225.872-1. 231 FAR Subpart 25.9. Available online at: http://www.arnet.gov/far/current/pdf/FAR.book.pdf. 232 Available online at: http://www.ccr.gov. 233 Federal Acquisition Regulations, Sub-Part 19.10. For the four designated industry groups for which there is unrestricted competition, solicitations must be set aside for emerging small businesses if contracts are below the reserve amount of US$25,000 for construction, refuse systems and related services, and non-nuclear
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WT/TPR/S/126 Trade Policy Review Page 87 12. The SBA administers two business assistance programmes for small disadvantaged businesses (SDBs): the 8(a) Business Development Program; and the Small Disadvantaged Business Certification Program. The 8(a) Program offers a broad scope of assistance to socially and economically disadvantaged firms. The 8a Program helps federal agencies achieve a government- wide goal of 5% SDB participation in prime contracting by authorizing either sole-source contracts to 8(a) firms or restrictively competed contracts among 8(a) firms.
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