On 11 February 2014, the Council of the European Union (“CEU”) adopted the legislative package for modernization of public procurement in the EU. The package is made up of a directive on public procurement (replacing directive 2004/18/EC), a directive on procurement by entities operating in the utilities sectors: water, energy, transport and postal services (replacing directive 2004/17/EC) and a directive on the award of concession contracts. According to the CEU, the package provides for a simplification and flexibilisation of the procedural regime set by the current rules dating back to 2004. Further, the new rules seek to ensure greater inclusion of common societal goals in the procurement process and the package provides for concrete measures to remove barriers for market access by small and medium-sized enterprises. Furthermore, the new regime seeks to ensure that contracting authorities take appropriate measures to prevent, identify and remedy conflicts of interests arising in the conduct of procurement procedures so as to avoid any distortion of competition and ensure equal treatment of all economic operators. Moreover, the new directives contain obligations for member states to monitor and report on public procurement activity in order to improve the efficacy and uniform application of EU law in this field. Source: Council of the European Union Press Release 11/02/2014.