What will public sector clients do about procurement when the UK leaves the EU?
The majority of the public debate during the EU Referendum was about the economic benefits, sovereignty and the control of immigration.
Equally important, however, are the hundreds of practical matters which affect businesses and public sector organisations on a day-to-day basis.
One of the major factors to be considered by the public sector is the procurement of services. There is currently an obligation to advertise in the Official Journal of the European Union for services in excess of €135,000.
This process can often be a financial burden for the public sector and can lead to delays of a year or more for major projects, due to the need to assess a potentially large number of bids or pre-qualification submissions.
It remains to be seen how soon the UK can be relieved of this legal obligation. However, in due course, public sector organisations are likely to have several options:
- To abandon the OJEU process as soon as possible.
- To continue the OJEU process if this becomes permissible under EU rules (it would be to the advantage of EU States).
- To set up new procurement processes based on market knowledge but retaining Framework Agreements.
- Set up new procurement processes in which selecting a short list will be advisable and easier to access good quality supply of products and services.
It is advantageous for each organisation to consider its own situation and this might vary according to what projects or services they are considering.
Source: Jeremy Sneddon at Provelio
Posted and amended by Pete Medcalf