Last updateTue, 24 Feb 2015 5pm

Procurement and Outsourcing Journal: May/June 2015

Lisa Boyd examines the Public Contracts Regulations 2015 in relation to abnormally low tenders

Most authorities want to achieve value for money by obtaining goods, services or works from a suitably qualified contractor at the best price. An abnormally low tender presents a potential risk to the authority in that the contractor may not deliver the contract properly or may seek additional payment and thus not fulfil the contract for the price quoted.

Anthony Gold

Dr Jock Mackenzie outlines the lessons to be learned from Hinchingbrooke Hospital

Tuesday 31 March 2015 saw the official end to the first private company running an NHS hospital, some seven years earlier than intended. Circle Healthcare was the private company and Hinchingbrooke in Huntingdon the NHS hospital, with the rather high-profile withdrawal originally having been announced on 9 January 2015 and the NHS running the hospital again from 1 April 2015, with a new board. The withdrawal was high profile because it had been the first such arrangement, or franchise agreement, in the NHS and an apparent trailblazer for the practical application of the concept of the running of an NHS hospital solely by a private company.


Graeme Young and Maria Ziprani assess the impact of the Public Contracts Regulations 2015 on variation and termination rights

Until recently, discussions on contract variations between contractors and authorities have invariably led to the parallel procurement universe of Pressetext. In its 2008 judgment in Pressetext, the European Court of Justice (ECJ) held that in order to ensure transparency of procedures and equal treatment of tenderers, amendments to the provisions of a public contract will constitute the award of a new contract for the purposes of the EU public procurement rules when (para 34):

In the conclusion to a two-part consideration, Dr Sam De Silva looks at the different types of service levels and the consequences of failing to meet them

Part one of this article discussed ways to measure service levels and specify performance standards. This concluding part will explore types of service levels, including those for business process outsourcing, and what happens when a party fails to meet business critical levels.

Victoria Moorcroft analyses the evaluation of capacity after Lianakis

It is now nearly ten years since the European Court of Justice decided in Lianakis v Dimos Alexandroupolis [2008] that the public procurement rules oblige contracting authorities only to consider the experience of bidders at the pre-qualification stage. At the award stage, an authority is not allowed to take into account the tenderers’ experience, manpower and equipment, or their ability to perform the contract by the anticipated deadline.

Kelly Friedman considers the importance of international standards from a Canadian perspective

International standards foster international trade. They provide a worldwide baseline for quality, safety and/or efficiency for products, services and systems. International standards can encourage transactions to be consummated between entities in countries separated by distance, culture, language, history and legal regimes. As a simple example, consider a consumer goods distributor considering whether to enter into an agreement with a manufacturer outside of its jurisdiction; the distributor might take comfort in the fact that the manufacturer is certified to comply with recognisable international standards for its manufacturing process and quality control. In this way, international standards encourage international commerce by overcoming technical barriers caused when each nation, national standards organisation or company uses its own unique specifications.

Helen Randall discusses the legalities of including ethical and social policy objectives within procurement and outsourcing

The power of consumers to influence the behaviours and outcomes of business is growing. This can be inferred from the increased market share for products claiming to be sustainably or ethically sourced or produced.

Katherine Souter reports on Reg 113 of the Public Contracts Regulations 2015 and the payment of undisputed invoices by contracting authorities, contractors and sub-contractors

According to the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills’ report, ‘Late Payment: Challenging grossly unfair terms and practices’, evidence shows that small and medium businesses (enterprises which employ fewer than 250 people and which have an annual turnover not exceeding €50m, and/or an annual balance sheet total not exceeding €43m) are owed a total of £39.4bn and are waiting for an average of £38,200 in overdue payments.