Thursday, 23 April 2015

UK Public Procurement - change is coming

Just a reminder that Francis Maude is standing down at the election in 2 weeks, and so there will be changes at the Cabinet Office, and therefore potentially throughout public sector procurement in England (at least).   His swansong will have been the requirement for all contracts below the OJEU threshold but above £10 000 (Central government) or £25 000 (sub-central government) to be conducted using a single stage open process (i.e. no PQQ stage).    I have wittered on before about how I am far from convinced that this is a good idea (especially for Buyers, but also for suppliers) so let's leave it there.

Mr Maude spent a long time at Cabinet Office, and was notably interested in Procurement as a tool for government policy.  His replacement, of whatever political flavour, may share his zeal - or just see it as a stepping stone to a "real" job at HM Treasury.  Whichever, we need to be on the look out for any indicated change of direction.

Not least of all because (as again pointed out by Peter Smith and SpendMatters) Contracting Authorities have an obligation under the Small Business, Enterprise and Employment Act 2015
 to "have regard to any guidance for the time being in force under this section".

So don't forget to keep reading the PPNs (Procurement Policy Notes) from the Cabinet Office.

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