Public Spend Matters Europe – Highlights from this Week

So, what have we published for you this week on our site dedicated to exciting and fascinating matters connected with European public sector procurement? And before you even think about switching off ... around Europe, we are talking about well over a trillion Euros of money from taxpayers and citizens being spent by government and public sector bodies of some sort. Worth doing well, you might consider.

Anyway, here are summaries of our features this week – do click though and read the full articles.

Do EU Procurement Thresholds and Inconsistent Court Rulings Overcomplicate the Cross-Border Interest Test?  

n the final of Dr Pedro Telles’ Public Procurement Podcasts, guest expert Piotr Bogdanowicz, assistant professor in European law at the University of Warsaw and legal adviser, discusses how the EU deals with cross-border interest in public procurement. He explains why cross-border interest is important in EU law, and discusses why defining what constitutes cross-border contracts is tricky. He questions whether thresholds are actually a good factor in determining whether cross-border interest exists and suggests a potential solution.

Refugee Crisis – Corruption More Likely When Public Procurement Processes Are Circumvented

The refugee crisis rather overshadows mundane procurement issues. Yet the crisis must be putting pressure on a whole range of institutions, procurement and supply chain processes. Where it is public bodies who have the need to acquire goods, services or works in a true emergency environment, then the usual public processes can be over-ridden. Whilst this makes perfect sense, it does of course open up the doors to corruption and fraud. Contracting authorities, audit bodies and others need to keep an eye on the issues we discuss here.

Supporting SMEs in Public Procurement - New UK Target but We Need More Gazelles!

The UK government has set a new target for the amount of central government spend going to SMEs. During the last government an “aspiration” was set at 25%. And guess what? The target was achieved. But only by counting the “spend through the supply chain” that ended up with SMEs. So the actual central government spend with SMEs was around 10%. In our opinion, it is wrong to say in some public statements: “Government spends over a quarter of its procurement budget with small and medium-sized enterprises.”

EU Local Authorities Join TTIP Opposition

The Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) remains a hot topic as negotiations continue. It has prompted protests across the EU this year due to its possible negative impact on food and health safety standards, local economies and businesses, procurement of goods and services, and to a wider extent, democracy itself.  Now, local councils are beginning to make their disapproval heard as well -- grassroots groups are pushing local authorities to declare themselves as TTIP-free zones.

Public Vehicle Procurement in the News This Week - Cars, Scooters and Submarines

Three short notices about three different, yet oddly similar, public procurements in Europe in the news this week: police cars in the UK, police scooters in Spain, and submarines in Poland. British Police Sending Millions of Tax Payer Money Abroad for Foreign Vehicles; Barcelona Police Reduce C02 By Going Electric; Polish Government Considers Joint Submarine Procurement To Save Costs.

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