Public Spend Matters Europe – Highlights from this Week

Here is our Friday run down of  what we have published for you on our site dedicated to exciting and fascinating matters connected with European public sector procurement - Public Spend Matters Europe.  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.

Tragedy in Paris and Will Nationalism Hit Public Procurement?

What are the consequences of these appalling acts? That is what the media, politicians and public will now focus on in coming weeks. Perhaps countries in Europe will come together and take a more proactive and common stance. It is easy to foresee a number of issues where European countries are going to take approaches that are locally driven rather than pan-European. Public procurement, just as in the case of other policy areas, may start moving back towards national approaches that look to benefit individual countries and play to local political drivers, rather than supporting the great European vision.

Cross-Border Contract Wins Will Decline as Procurement Regulations Offer Authorities More "Flexibility"

Nunes de Almeida, Director of Public Procurement, Directorate for internal Markets and Services in the European Commission, talked at last week's public Procurement Summit in London about the desire to increase cross-border trade and the ability of firms to bid for contracts in other countries. But there are problems here.  Achieving an increase in cross-border bidding and trade is not going to be easy, particularly when some major countries still advertise only a small percentage of their total public sector purchasing requirements. And then there is the issue seeing more business going to "local" suppliers.

Single Market Strategy: Better Data Collection and Remedies Systems Needed in Public Procurement

At the end of October, the European Commission presented its new single market strategy, which outlines the priorities of the Commission over the next few years in relation to the single market. The strategy aims to boost opportunities for citizens and businesses. It contains measures that aim to improve the transparency, efficiency and accountability of public procurement. Given that €2.3 trillion is spent on public procurement annually, efficiency is key in addressing challenges such as growth, jobs, market access for SMEs, innovation, environmentally and socially sustainable growth, as well as citizens’ trust in public authorities.

Availability of Procurement Documents – Guidance on EU and UK Legislation

One of the more contentious new points in the 2013 EU Procurement Directives was around availability of procurement documents. The basic text talked about all documents being available at the time of the contract notice, which has certainly not been the practice in the vast majority of historical public procurements. But many observers have pointed out that this is not just counter to existing practice; it is very difficult in many cases, and arguably impossible in some. So what is the advice for public procurement practitioners?

Procurement of Innovation Award - A Close Competition (Part 1)

Having announced the winner of the Procurement of Innovation award last month -- Federal Procurement Agency Austria -- and outlining the details of the winning procurement -- Vacuum vaporizer based wastewater recycling system for the Austrian Mint -- we promised you a look at the other finalists that made the shortlist with their innovations -- here are the first two: Stockholm County Council (Karolinska University Hospital) and CONSIP S.p.A., Italy'

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