Latest Public Sector News

18.03.20

Government changes procurement policy in response to Covid-19

The government has announced today (Mar 18) a change in their approach to the procurement of goods and services amid the Covid-19 pandemic, with immediate effect.

In order to procure goods, services and works with extreme urgency during this time of crisis when the supply chain is disrupted, the government has permitted various new actions.

These include:

  • Direct award due to extreme urgency.
  • Direct award due to absence of competition or protection of exclusive rights.
  • Call off from an existing framework agreement or dynamic purchasing system.
  • Call for competition using a standard procedure with accelerated timescales.
  • Extending or modifying a contract during its term.

Contracting authorities are permitted to enter into contracts prior to competing or advertising the requirement, providing they can prove the need for extreme urgency, including public health risk or reacting to a genuine emergency.

If there is no time to run a traditional procurement process and this situation is not attributed to the contracting authority, the contract may be entered in this new way.

A written justification that satisfies these stipulations must be kept by the authorities and requirements should be limited to what is ‘absolutely necessary’ in terms of what is being procured and length of the contract.

On the official Cabinet Office response, it read:

“It is important that contracting authorities continue to achieve value for money and use good commercial judgement during any direct award. Whilst prices may be higher than would be expected in a regular market, any abnormally high pricing should be approved by the appropriate commercial director.

A direct award may be given where the works, goods or services needed can only be supplied by a particular supplier because there is no competition due to capability or technical reasons, as long as there is no reasonable alternative or the requirement isn’t being over-specified.

To learn more about the changes to procurement policy and the public sectors current purchasing requirements submit your details and one of our specialists will be in touch.

Comments

There are no comments. Why not be the first?

Add your comment

 

public sector executive tv

more videos >

last word

Prevention: Investing for the future

Prevention: Investing for the future

Rob Whiteman, CEO at the Chartered Institute of Public Finance (CIPFA), discusses the benefits of long-term preventative investment. Rising demand, reducing resource – this has been the r more > more last word articles >

public sector focus

View all News

comment

Peter Kyle MP: It’s time to say thank you this Public Service Day

21/06/2019Peter Kyle MP: It’s time to say thank you this Public Service Day

Taking time to say thank you is one of the hidden pillars of a society. Bei... more >
How community-led initiatives can help save the housing shortage

19/06/2019How community-led initiatives can help save the housing shortage

Tom Chance, director at the National Community Land Trust Network, argues t... more >

interviews

Artificial intelligence: the devil is in the data

17/12/2018Artificial intelligence: the devil is in the data

It’s no secret that the public sector and its service providers need ... more >

the raven's daily blog

What came first, the bad customer or the bad customer service?

17/03/2020What came first, the bad customer or the bad customer service?

Source: PSE Feb/March 20 Stephen Bahooshy, Senior Commissioning Manager and Nicky Selwyn, Carer and Service User Group Chair, Croydon Council.   Here it is... more >
read more blog posts from 'the raven' >

editor's comment

25/10/2017Take a moment to celebrate

Devolution, restructuring and widespread service reform: from a journalist’s perspective, it’s never been a more exciting time to report on the public sector. That’s why I could not be more thrilled to be taking over the reins at PSE at this key juncture. There could not be a feature that more perfectly encapsulates this feeling of imminent change than the article James Palmer, mayor of Cambridgeshire and Peterborough, has penned for us on p28. In it, he highlights... read more >