Public Spend Matters Europe – Highlights from This Week

Public Spend Matters Europe is dedicated to the exciting and fascinating matters connected with European public sector procurement. As usual, before you think about switching off, it's worth remembering that 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've been discussing this week.

If you find anything interesting please do click through to the full article:

Pinsent Masons on the Consequences of Brexit for Public Procurement

As we move closer to the UK referendum on EU membership, we’re likely to see more speculation about that will happen if the country does vote to leave. The impact of Brexit on UK procurement regulations is probably not top of the list of possible consequences for most people, but for the public procurement community it is of considerable interest. We discuss our view that a vote to leave the EU would have little immediate impact on the UK situation, which is backed up by the opinions of a leading legal expert.

US Public Procurement Should Support Boeing Better, Europe Acts Illegally re Airbus

There is a perception that EU procurement regulations push public sector contracting authorities into running competitive processes, rather than just supporting “local” industry and suppliers. “Local” can mean anything from “in Europe” to “in my town” of course depending on the perspective of the particular politician or official. So it is interesting occasionally to get a perspective form another part of the world. Forbes provides a thought-provoking article on the announcement from Boeing that it is going to cut 4,000 jobs from its US workforce. It argues that the US government has failed on several counts to support Boeing in terms of winning US contracts - we consider that and see some parallels with the UK steel industry.

Imposing Social Conditions on Public Contracts -- Bristol University Reopens Debate

European public procurement has moved away from its initial focus on value for money, open access and anti-corruption and started introducing more "social" aims and objectives into the picture. Because of this, EU law on whether it is permissible to impose social conditions – like creation of local or regional employment, or the enforcement of labour standards, such as ‘living’ or ‘minimum’ wage – on contractors performing public contracts, has been an increasing area of controversy in the courts for some time. Recent cases have set new parameters in imposing special conditions on public sector contractors, so it is a good time for the debate to be reopened on just how influential these recent decisions have been on the revision of EU public procurement law. Bristol Univeristy discusses.

Issues With Buying From Smaller Suppliers - Stephen Allott Comments

Stephen Allott has been a successful software entrepreneur and CEO, he was Crown Commercial Representative with responsibility for SMEs in the UK’s Cabinet Office (which has responsibility for public procurement) for several years, and now works on development of the Digital Marketplace within the Government Digital Services. Following the UK’s National Audit Office (NAO) report, Government’s spending with small and medium-sized enterprises, he expresses his views in a recent article in Computer Weekly and is now considered somewhat of a 'maverick' by the public procurement mainstream, so we feature him here.

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