26 June 2023
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Consultation launched on implementation of the Procurement Bill – have your say!

To The Point

The Procurement Bill is due to get Royal Assent shortly. There are plans to disapply the new rules for certain NHS procurements, and use the Provider Selection Regime instead, where the presumption is that contracts will not be competed regularly, but rolled over if the supplier is doing a 'good job'. You can have your say in a new consultation on how these rules will be applied. Keep up to date with our Procurement Reform Hub.

Purpose of the consultation

The UK is pressing ahead with reforms to its procurement laws that will take a step away from the EU regime that was applicable pre-Brexit. The intentions of the proposals are to encourage a more transparent approach and to make the procurement process quicker and simpler.  

The consultation relates to the secondary legislation and guidance which is required to implement the Bill. 

The consultation includes 18 questions on the following subjects:

  • Light Touch Contracts and Reservable Light Touch Services;
  • Exempt Contracts: Vertical and Horizontal Activities Calculations;
  • Exempt Contracts: Utilities Intra-group Turnover Calculations;
  • Utility Turnover and Supply Tests;
  • Intra-UK Procurement;
  • Definitions of ‘Central Government Authority’ and ‘Works’ for Thresholds;
  • Disapplication of section 17 of the Local Government Act; and
  • Disapplication in regard to NHS Procurement.

Who will this affect?

The Bill sets out new rules and procedures for central government departments, their arms-length bodies and the wider public sector when selecting suppliers and awarding contracts over a certain value. 

What to do if you are affected

If you are a private company involved in bidding for, winning and delivering public contracts, please do consider if you want to engage with the consultation and comment on the changes, as they may have an impact on your business, including how you submit bids and engage with your public sector customer. 

There are particular rules for contracts involving the health and social care sector, where there is a planned departure from the standard position for tendering, to allow NHS providers to take advantage of the new Provider Selection Regime where competitions for contracts will only occur in specific circumstances.  

You can find full details, including how to respond to the consultation on the government website. The deadline for responses is 28th July 2023 and this can be done via a survey, alternatively you can email procurement.reform@cabinetoffice.gov.uk

Implementation Timeframe 

The Procurement Bill is expected to become law during the course of 2023. However, the Government has committed to providing 6 months' advance notice of the go live (likely Autumn 2024) for a transitional phase.

Next steps

You can follow the progress of the Bill and stay updated with the guidance about its implementation by visiting our Procurement Reform Hub.

To the Point 

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