The latest on procurement legislation.
Secondary legislation consultation
We have been developing the raft of secondary legislation (regulations) that is required to support the new Procurement regime and bring it into effect.
The regulations, which cover a broad range of areas across the Bill and include detailed technical content, will be subject to a public consultation which we expect to take place over the summer.
The consultation will be split over 2 parts, with Part 1 covering the non-transparency related regulations, and Part 2 focussing on the Transparency-related regulations. This approach will ensure stakeholders can focus on the transparency-related and non-transparency related regulations separately and have maximum opportunity to feedback on technical details.
We will provide more details of the timing of the separate consultation phases in due course.
Changes to the Public Contracts Regulations
The free-trade agreements (FTA) between the UK and Australia; and the UK and New Zealand came into force on 31 May 2023. To ensure that we comply with our international obligations, Welsh Ministers exercised their powers to lay a statutory instrument (“SI”) in the Senedd to amend existing procurement regulations. in line with the public procurement obligations included in the two FTAs in respect of devolved Welsh Authorities.
Three minor technical amendments to the Public Contracts Regulations are being made:
1. Unknown contract value
Where the value of a procurement cannot be estimated, the procurement is to be treated as having been valued at the relevant threshold for that type of procurement
2. Prior information notice
To remove the possibility of using a prior information notice and a periodic indicative notice, respectively, as the call for competition
3. Termination of awarded contracts in order to avoid obligations under our international agreements
Prohibit contracting authorities and utilities from terminating contracts in a manner that circumvents legal obligations.
These changes came into effect on 26 May 2023, and a Wales Procurement Policy Note (WPPN) has been published. The WPPN includes further detail on the changes and the actions that Welsh Contracting Authorities must make as a result of the SI.
Changes to Common Procurement Vocabulary (CPV) Codes
Rebecca Evans, the Minister for Finance and Local Government has recently consented to the UK government laying a statutory instrument (“SI”) in Parliament which affects contracting authorities in Wales.
The SI, which will be laid on 8 June, makes changes to the existing list of CPV codes used in public sector procurements due to concerns that some of the wording was not compatible with current equality legislation. The 2 affected CPV codes have now been amended to:
- 85311200-4 - Welfare services for disabled people, and
- 85312120-6 - Day-care services for disabled children and young people.
The amendments, which will take immediate effect, ensure that any references to these CPV codes in either procurement legislation or public procurements use the appropriate language.