UK to develop new government procurement site in the event of no-deal Brexit
If the UK leaves the European Union without a deal, the government has pledged that an equivalent to the current TED and OJEU platforms will be ready ‘from exit day’
If the UK leaves the European Union without a deal, the government will build a domestic replacement for the EU’s online procurement platforms.
European law dictates that all contract notices from UK public-sector entities whose value is above the relevant threshold must be published on the Tenders Electronic Daily (TED) website. TED, which publishes more than half a million notices each year, is the online database of the Official Journal of the European Union.
Central government organisations must publish via TED all notices for the supply of products, services, and consultancy whose estimated value is at least £118,433, excluding VAT. For the wider public sector, the value threshold for OJEU publication is £181,302.
The threshold for works contracts stands at £4.55m for both central government and the wider public sector.
In the 2018 financial year, more than 36,000 notices were published on TED by UK public sector organisations.
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For suppliers across the world, TED provides free access to government contracting opportunities from across the EU, as well as the wider European Economic Area – and beyond.
A guidance document published by the Cabinet Office reveals that, in the event of a ‘no-deal’ Brexit, “a replacement UK-specific e-notification service will be made available”.
“Changes to the procurement rules will be made via amendments to existing legislation, to ensure continued operability,” the guidance said. “All contract opportunities that would currently be published on OJEU/TED would be published on the new UK e-notification service.”
It added: “This would be in line with the current requirements to send notices to the EU Publications Office for publication on OJEU/TED. Publication would take place electronically and the service will be free for all users.”
The Cabinet Office said that the UK is also “aiming to accede” to the World Trade Organization’s Agreement on Government Procurement – a treaty in which it currently takes part as a result of the country’s membership of the EU.
If and when a UK replacement for the OJEU and TED platforms is implemented, public sector entities would have the same obligations to publish their notices via the appropriate channel.
Contracts under the EU threshold are currently required to be published via one or more of a number of domestic e-notification platforms, the biggest of which is the GOV.UK Contracts Finder service. This requirement will remain in place following the UK’s exit from the European Union, the guidance said.
If required, contracting authorities and suppliers will be able to access the new platform “from exit day”, it added.
Of the 561,303 notices published on TED during the 2018 fiscal year, about 65,000 related to IT and telecoms products or services.
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