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The bidding process

i Notice

All contracting entities are obliged to publish the call for bids on their websites when the contract is to be awarded through an open contest. All calls for bids must also be published on the website of the national contracting service. In both cases, the call must remain online until the day before the receipt of the bids. Article 79 of the PPA allows public entities to publish the call for bids in open contests in the national, regional or local media, particularly where building works are concerned. In the case of open international contests, the call for bids may be published in foreign media if authorised by the central planning commission.

The call for bids must contain, among others:

  1. the object of the bid concerned;
  2. identification of the contracting entity;
  3. the address, unit and date of when the terms for the bidding process will be available;
  4. the place, day and time of the public hearing, or time that the bids and other documentation will be received; and
  5. the bidding procedure applicable.
ii Procedures

The type of procedure depends upon the value of the contract. The different procurement procedures are applicable according to the following thresholds:

  1. open contest: when the value of the goods is above 20,000 UCAU, above 30,000 UCAU for services subject to the contract, or, in the case of building works, above 50,000 UCAU. The open contest takes three different forms:
    • a single hearing for the letter of intent, clarification and offer;
    • a hearing for two statements concerning the letter of intent and offer; however, only the letter of intent and qualifying documents will be reviewed, while the offer will be reviewed in a separate hearing the following day; or
    • separate hearings for the submission of the letter of intent, which will be received in the first hearing to evaluate who is qualified to submit an offer and who will be called for the second hearing for the submission of the offer;
  2. closed contest: when the contract for the acquisition of goods is between 5,000 and 20,000 UCAU, provision of services is between 10,000 and 30,000 UCAU, or, in the case of building works, between 20,000 and 50,000 UCAU;
  3. request for quotations: when the contract for the acquisition of goods and services is below 5,000 UCAU and, in the case of building works, below 20,000 UCAU; and
  4. direct award: this is the only procurement procedure related to exceptional circumstances and not the value of the contract.

The PPA allows awarding authorities to use electronic auctions. To be able to participate, the call for bids must be under the principle of neutrality and include the technical specifications of the technology used in the bidding process.

iii Amending bids

Once an offer has been submitted, it cannot be amended. It is possible for the contracting entity to change the conditions of the bid up to two days before the hearing (whichever is first, in accordance with the applicable procedure).