Our new arrival: the Procurement Act is born

Almost 18 months after it was laid before Parliament in May last year, the Procurement Bill finally received Royal Assent on 26 October and thereby became the Procurement Act 2023 (“the Act“).  The Act is expected to enter into force in October 2024 and will replace the existing regulations governing the award of contracts and … Read more

The long-awaited Procurement Bill goes before Parliament: 10 key features

The much-anticipated Procurement Bill was laid before the UK Parliament on 11 May and has already received its first reading in the House of Lords.   Once enacted, the Bill will overhaul the existing regulations governing the award of public and utility contracts in the UK (other than Scotland).  These outgoing regulations are based closely on … Read more

COURTS CONSIDER LEGALITY OF PROCUREMENT DECISIONS TAKEN DURING THE PANDEMIC

Two recent judgments have been handed down, relating to allegations of breach of procurement rules by campaign organisation The Good Law Project against the Government. Both judgments related to procurement decisions made during the first wave of the Covid-19 pandemic: The High Court held that the Government’s use of a high priority lane in the … Read more

High Court finds apparent bias in contract award decision

The High Court has found apparent bias on the part of the Government in respect of its award of a contract under the Public Contracts Regulations 2015 (the “PCR“) for the provision of focus group and communication support services without public notice or competition during the early weeks of the Covid-19 pandemic (the “Contract“) (R … Read more

UK Government publishes long-awaited Green Paper on transforming public procurement

The UK Government has published a Green Paper proposing fundamental reforms of the public procurement rules governing the purchase of goods, works and services by the public sector and certain utilities. Those rules are currently set out in a series of UK regulations that are based very closely on EU directives. Following Brexit, the Government wishes … Read more

The UK gears up for public procurement outside the EU

The Government continues to prepare the ground for the regulation of public procurement after the Brexit transition period expires on 31 December 2020. On 19 November it enacted the Public Procurement (Amendment etc.) (EU Exit) Regulations 2020, which amend the existing UK procurement regulations in order to reflect the fact that the UK will no … Read more

Procurement Disputes

Public procurement is an area where in recent years there has been a significant growth in litigation. In contrast to ordinary public law principles, where there is a high threshold before the court will intervene, procurement law involves a much more searching approach to review. Exacting standards are applied to the conduct of procurement processes, … Read more