The Procurement Bill (the ‘Bill’) has now been published, following its first reading in the House of Lords. The second reading, including debate of the Bill’s contents, is set to take place on 25 May 2022.
In its current form, the Bill includes 13 Parts and 11 Schedules, running to 122 pages. There is a lot to consider for both contracting authorities and private sector suppliers.
The Bill contains new the Procurement Objectives which seek to incorporate a duty to consider value for money, public benefit, sharing information to promote understanding and integrity. Procurement procedures have been rebranded, amended or, in some cases, removed. Additional duties such as the general obligation to use key performance indicators in contracts valued above £2m have also been introduced.
We are likely to see amendments as the Bill undergoes the parliamentary process. It is anticipated that the legislation will not come into force prior to 2023 and six months’ notice will be given before the new regime is implemented. In the meantime, the Public Contracts Regulations 2015 and other existing regulations will continue to apply.