Procurement regime to remain unchanged in no-deal Brexit, UK government confirms

Out-Law News | 15 Jan 2019 | 10:26 am | 1 min. read

Public procurement regulations in the UK will remain largely unchanged if the UK leaves the EU without any political or trade deal on 29 March, but suppliers will have to change their processes to ensure they are notified of public procurement opportunities.

The UK government has published guidance on public sector procurement if there is a no-deal Brexit. The guidance repeats the government's plan that the regime will remain largely unchanged with the current EU regime being imposed in national legislation.

But public procurement expert Caroline Ramsay of Pinsent Masons, the law firm behind, said that the guidance contains useful detail about the mechanisms to be used to inform suppliers about work opportunities.

"The government confirms some new practical detail, for example that contract opportunity advertising will be slightly different and both contracting authorities and tenderers should note these changes," she said.

Pan-European contract notices are currently advertised in the Official Journal of the European Union (OJEU), but UK opportunities may not be published there after a no-deal Brexit. The government said it would launch a separate UK e-notification service and that it will be live and available for use by exit day.

"Some existing e-notification providers will have automatic access to the new UK e-notification service but not all," said Ramsay. "Contracting authorities which use separate e-notification  platforms instead of the European Tenders Electronic Daily (TED) are therefore advised to check to ensure that their notices continue to be properly advertised."

"Suppliers wishing to access UK contract opportunities from the UK public-sector will also need to access the new UK e-notification service instead of Tenders Electronic Daily (TED). Suppliers can continue to access the relevant domestic portal, such as Contracts Finder, MOD Defence Contracts Online, Public Contracts Scotland, Sell2Wales and eTendersNI.," said Ramsay. "Once the new UK e-notification service is live, suppliers should look to re-instigate any CPV code notifications which it had set-up with TED to ensure that opportunities are not missed."