Doing Business with UNON

What we do

The Procurement Section undertakes the procurement of goods, services and/or works for UNON, UNEP, UN-Habitat and their respective Offices Away from Headquarters (OAHs). The Procurement Section is also responsible for registering vendors and processing the Value Added Tax (VAT) exemption applications for all local vendors who conduct business with UNON, UNEP and UN-Habitat. Procurement adheres to the Financial Regulations 5.12 and Financial Rules 105.03 105.19, as well as the Procurement Manual. See latest version of the Procurement Manual as well as the Financial Regulations and Rules under its own headings. Financial Regulation 5.12 Procurement functions include all actions necessary for the acquisition, by purchase or lease, of property, including products and real property, and of services, including works. The following general principles shall be given due consideration when exercising the procurement functions of the United Nations: Best Value for Money; Fairness, integrity and transparency; Effective international competition; The interest of the United Nations Organisation.

Procurement Procedures

Vendor Registration at the United Nations Office at Nairobi (UNON)

ALL vendors are required to register companies online, on the UN Global Marketplace (UNGM) Please note that vendors must ensure that UN Secretariat is selected among the UN Organisations with whom they wish to conduct business.

Mandatory registration requirements:
Basic Registration - Contract value between US$4,000 – US$40,000

  • Basic vendor information
  • UN Supplier Code of Conduct
  • Codes for relevant goods/ services

Level 1 – Contract value between US$40,000 – US$500,000

  • Certificate of Incorporation (or equivalent)
  • Contact details of three (3) references

Level 2 – Contract value above US$500,000

  • Three reference letters (last 12 months)
  • Financial documents – audited financial documents (last 3 years)

Please indicate UNGM number and registration status when submitting quotations/bids/proposals. For any queries regarding registration, contact Bernadette Kinuthia, e-mail: or tel: +254-20-7623468.

Expression of Interest (EOI)

It is a mandatory requirement to advertise requirements for all procurement exercises in excess of $40,000. Presently, UNON is posting EOIs on its website and on UNGM (United Nations Global Market Place,, Procurement Division's website, as well as on UNON's website. All vendors that present their interest and meet potential pre-qualifying criteria will be invited. Other vendors already on the vendor roster will also be invited.


Request for Information (RFI)


Strategic Source Selection Plan (SSP)

This Source Selection Plan (SSP) provides guidance on the selected solicitation process, establishes organisational responsibilities, defines technical evaluation criteria and procedures for evaluating bids / quotations / proposals received. The SSP describes critical components of the sourcing process and provides justification for sourcing decisions in order to achieve Best Value for Money. The Procurement Section utilises the SSP for all requirements in excess of US$40,000.

Competitive Bidding - Solicitation documents

The UN uses three standard types of Solicitation Documents, namely Request For Quotation (RFQ), Invitation To Bid (ITB) and Request For Proposal. Each is used for a different type of procurement. RFQ is used for what is called Informal Method of Solicitation and ITB/RFP are used for Formal Method of Solicitation. Formal Methods of Solicitation require Public Bid Opening to be held by Procurement Section to which all participating vendors are invited.

Request for Quotation (RFQ)

A Request for Quotation (RFQ) shall be used for the procurement of goods, services or works with standard and clear specifications and a total estimated value above US$4,000 and up to US$40,000

Invitation to Bid (ITB)

An Invitation to Bid (ITB) shall be used for the procurement of goods with standard and clear specifications and a total estimated value in excess of US$ 40,000. There is no distinction between technical and financial evaluation as for RFP, see below. A company needs to meet all criteria set out in the bidding document in order to be technically compliant. The award will to company that has the lowest cost and is technically compliant. The evaluation is done by Procurement.

Request for Proposal (RFP)

A Request for Proposals (RFP) shall be used for procurement of goods, services or works that cannot be quantitatively or qualitatively expressed in sufficient detail to allow for use of an ITB, such as professional or other complex goods, services or works. The RFP uses a two-envelope system, whereby the technical proposal is first evaluated and only financial proposals of those companies that are technically compliant will be opened. The technical evaluation is done by the requisitioning office and the financial evaluation by Procurement.

Exceptions to Competitive Bidding

There are exceptions to competitive bidding as laid out by the Financial Rule 105.16:

  1. When there is no competitive marketplace for the requirement, such as where a monopoly exists, where prices are fixed by legislation or government regulation or where the requirement involves a proprietary product or service;

  2. Where there has been a previous determination or there is a need to standardize the requirement;

  3. When the proposed procurement contract is the result of cooperation with other organization of the UN system, pursuant to rule 105.17;

  4. When offers for identical products and services have been obtained competitively within a reasonable period and the prices and conditions offered remain competitive;

  5. When, within a reasonable prior period, a formal solicitation has not produced satisfactory results;

  6. When the proposed procurement contract is for the purchase or lease of real property and market conditions do not allow for effective competition;

  7. When there is an exigency for the requirement;

  8. When the proposed procurement contract relates to obtaining services that cannot be evaluated objectively;

  9. When the Under-Secretary-General for Management otherwise determines that a formal solicitation will not give satisfactory results;The Chief Procurement Officer will review and approve waiver requests up to her delegated authority, which is US$150,000. Above this level, Director of Administrative Services, will review and approve requests.


Value Added Tax (V.A.T) Exemption
The Procurement Section is responsible for the processing of Value Added Tax (VAT) exemption applications for all local vendors who conduct business with UNON, UNEP and UN-Habitat. Local Vendors are required to provide UNON, within 24 hours of acceptance of the Purchase Order, an original Proforma Invoice with the following information: Proforma Invoice number UNON Reference i.e. Purchase Order number, Proper Description of goods/services, cost Kenya Shilling (KSH), VAT Percentage (i.e. 16%) and VAT amount both shown and PIN and VAT Numbers.
Failure to comply with this requirement in a timely manner may result in the loss of the vendor's right to VAT reimbursement. Questions on VAT may be addressed to Ms. Bernadette Kinuthia,

Procurement Section
UN Gigiri Complex, Block V-2 West
Support Services Section, UNON
Tel: 254 20 7623468