The Office of Government Commerce has published new draft procurement regulations following a consultative exercise which commenced in June 2005 and ends on 10 October 2005. The regulations are intended to come into force on 31 January 2006 and will affect governmental and quasi-governmental bodies that award contracts as well as businesses seeking to be awarded such contracts.
Changes were necessary following a judgment in the European Court of Justice concerning electronics giant Alcatel. This requires the introduction of a 10-day ‘standstill’ period between the award of a contract and its conclusion in order to permit complaints challenging the award of the contract.
The new regulations bring together in one document the previously distinguished areas of ‘public works contracts’, ‘public supply contracts’ and ‘public services contracts’. Separate regulations have been promulgated for the award of utilities contracts.
For further information, see the draft public contract regulations
and the draft public utilities regulations