Countdown to Brexit - ProcurementFriday, 02 October 2020
With the Brexit deadline passed and the end of the transition period fast approaching, the ByrneWallace Brexit team address various issues which will impact upon businesses either trading with or through the UK, or with suppliers in the UK, and/or with UK staff based in Ireland or staff in the UK.
In this issue, we address Procurement.
Critical issues for businesses to consider:
- New UK Regime: In March 2019, the UK Government enacted The Public Procurement (Amendment etc.) (EU Exit) Regulations 2019 which will come into force on the day the UK exits the EU. Despite affecting a number of existing statutes and introducing a new e-notification platform for advertisements, the UK public procurement regime will remain largely unchanged.
- Agreement on Government Procurement (GPA): The UK intends to join the World Trade Organisation GPA in order to gain access to the government procurement markets of other member states. The GPA is a formal agreement which requires its members to ensure open, fair and transparent conditions of competition in the public procurement market. Although the UK has been participating in the GPA for over 20 years as an EU member, post-Brexit, the UK will switch to being a party to the GPA in its own name, as an independent nation.
- Access for Tenderers to the UK market: The UK will give economic operators from other countries, that are a party to the GPA (which includes the EU Member States), continued access to the UK public procurement market after its withdrawal from the EU.
- New Platform for Advertisements: The new Regulations will end the obligation to publish contracts in the Official Journal of the European Union and replace it with a requirement to submit procurement notices to a new UK e-notification service called ‘Find a Tender’. While Find a Tender will be the new portal to view public procurement notices published by UK contracting authorities, existing portals such as Contracts Finder, MOD Defence Contracts Online, Public Contracts Scotland, Sell2Wales and eTendersNI will still be used to view low value or location specific notices.
- UK Tenderers: As economic operators in the UK will have the same status as bidders from third party countries which do not have an agreement with the EU providing for the EU procurement market, their ability to tender for certain supply contracts under the Utilities Directive and for security and defence contracts will be limited.
- EU Standards: Under the new regime, UK Tenderers may find it more difficult to comply with or prove equivalence with EU standards or recognition of qualifications.
0For more information on the above or for general advice on this topic, please contact Fergal Ruane or Rory O'Huiginn of our Procurement Team or our Brexit Team.
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