On 18 January 2017, the SCA has published guidance providing information regarding the prosecution of competition law irregularities in the area of public procurement (Guidance).

In recent years, the SCA has fined several companies for bid-rigging (e.g., adult-diapers, modular building or the international removals cartel).

According to the SCA, public procurement accounts for 15% of Spain’s GDP and the reduction of of competition in public tenders causes harm in excess of €40,000 million.

The Guidance lists ten signs of bid-rigging:

  • Reduced number of tenderers;
  • inconsistent offers from the same tenderer;
  • identical offers or suspicious similarities between the offers;
  • suspicions of the existence of a boycott;
  • non-competitive tenders;
  • suspicious behaviour patterns between the tendering companies;
  • unjustified sub-contracting between the tendering companies;
  • offers submitted by the same natural persons;
  • the creation of consortia between tenderers without any apparent justification.