The Scottish Government today released its consultation on implementation of:
- new EU procurement rules contained in EU Directives for public contracts, utilities and concessions, and
- the Procurement Reform (Scotland) Act 2014.
The Consultation is open until 30 April 2015 with implementation thereafter expected between late 2015 and early 2016. Separately, the UK Government released the response, on 30 January, to its 2014 consultation on transposing the new Procurement Directives. In its consultation the UK Government released a draft of the Public Contracts Regulations 2015. This draft transposition largely contained a direct pass down of the Directive provisions and it is expected that the final draft of the Public Contracts Regulations 2015 will not diverge from this approach. The UK Government will now begin the process of implementation and has indicated that the Public Contracts Regulations will be introduced in early 2015.
The Scottish Government has taken a less direct approach and has opted for consultation prior to drafting. The Scottish Government has a significant focus on embedding sustainable procurement practices and plans to unify its procurement approach by tying in the already-drafted Procurement Reform Scotland Act 2014 and the transposing of the new Directive into national law. Of interest, within the Scottish Government consultation questions are posed around introducing a new tribunal to hear procurement challenges.