Mutuals and SMEs under spotlight as government responds to EC procurement green paper

By David Bicknell

A post on Public Service Europe has argued that the govenment needs to explain its positioning on some key public procurement issues, notably in relation to mutuals and SMEs.

The post, written by a UK lawyer, argues that the government’s proposals sound ‘refreshingly promising’ but may reflect some  contradictions in wider policy.

It suggests that “the penny seems to have dropped in government that procurement policy is central to getting the economy moving again and not simply the esoteric occupation of a small number of professionals. The government has now published a Procurement Policy Note (05/11) setting out how it intends to engage with the commission on the reform of the rules. The note states that the rules as they currently stand are too complex, onerous and costly and encourage a risk-averse and over-bureaucratic approach to procurement within the EU.”

It adds that, “The note confirms that the government will be actively influencing the commission, other EU member states and the European Parliament in the run up to the publication of the commission’s proposals for revised and updated directives, and calls on those in the public procurement community who may have links to such bodies or other stakeholders to participate in that process and push the UK message. Whether the government will be successful; only time will tell. In the meantime it could let us know where it stands on the above issues.”

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