23 December 2008 | Jake Kanter
Public sector buyers in the EU must speed up procurement during the financial crisis, the European Commission (EC) has said.
The EC said faster purchasing can help governments complete major investment programmes more effectively, and boost the economy amid the current "exceptional" conditions.
It has urged public purchasers in member states to cut the usual time it takes to secure a deal from 87 days to just 30. This is permitted under special justification in the procurement directives. The EC said the shorter process should apply to all major public projects in both 2009 and 2010.
The acceleration means suppliers will only have 10 days to register interest in a contract, instead of the usual 37. In addition, the period in which prospective vendors have to submit tenders would also be reduced from the standard 40 days to just 10.
The "Alcatel" standstill review period, between the award decision and contract conclusion, will remain at 10 days, giving unsuccessful bidders time to challenge contract awards.