Public Spend Forum Europe – Public Procurement Highlights from this Week

Public Spend Forum Europe is dedicated to European public sector procurement, and aims to be a global community and knowledge network for public procurement and the public sector market. 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. So here is a roundup of what we were discussing this week. If you find anything interesting, please click through to the full article:

Final Meeting of the EcoQuip Project - Bologna in October

The EcoQuip project aims to demonstrate that the widespread use of innovation procurement methodologies is a practical means of addressing the future challenges of delivering both efficient and effective healthcare services to the citizens of Europe. The project has been running since 2013 and has made strides in innovation in the healthcare sector, best known for the Erasmus Medical Centre award-winning automated VMRC bed and mattress cleaning facility. But the project is now coming to an end and the final meeting is in October - but it's a rather unusual format - both exciting and informative -- do take a look in more detail.

Government Purchasing Cards - the Welsh Government and Victoria's Secret

“A Welsh Government credit card has been fraudulently used to spend £103.91 at lingerie shop Victoria's Secret, the government has said. The money has been returned but it is not known if anyone was disciplined. Some £7.5 million has been spent on Welsh Government credit cards since 2011, with the Tories' Monmouth AM Nick Ramsay saying some claims are "eye-watering". The Welsh Government said all purchases made on the cards are subject to audit”. That's from one media outlet, but let's look at it in context and we might find a slightly different story.

What's the Future for the ESPD: Does Brexit Mean ESPD Exit?

People are beginning to think about what Brexit might mean at the detailed level of procurement processes, regulations and developments. For instance, there are questions about the European Single Procurement Document, (ESPD) which is designed to allow firms form any country to submit what is in effect a standard pre-qualification response to any tender. The 2014 public procurement directives stipulate that the ESPD must be provided in electronic form after April 18th 2018. But until then, both electronic and paper versions of the ESPD may exist. But with the decision to leave the EU, is the ESPD future in doubt? Our readers also shed some light.

US Firm Protests 150 Times in a Year. Gets Suspended!

A US contractor (of military engineering services) has taken 150 challenges to the US Government Accountability Office over the space of one fiscal year. The GAO has had enough and suspended the firm from making any more protests for another year. Sounds a bit eccentric, but there are some serious underlying points for procurement. Is this kind of time-consuming behaviour intrinsic to the public sector? Would the private sector be so tolerant for so long? The difference is that private sector firms can award contracts to anyone they want to, without fear of protest (mostly). The public sector has to put up with both valid challenges and the odd, unusual challenge like this.

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