Public Procurement Reform Completed

After a legislative process that took more than two years, the final portion of public procurement reform is now entering into force. The new Public Procurement Ordinance [VgV] was published in the Federal Gazette on June 10, 2010 and will enter into force on June 11, 2010.

The VgV amendment contains the new EU threshold values applicable since the beginning of year. Additionally, by means of the new VgV also the amended contracting regulations VOB/A, VOL/A and VOF will enter into force. The Federal government expects to achieve a considerable reduction in bureaucracy since in many instances bidders will now be allowed to initially submit self-certifications instead of official certifications. In the area covered by the contracting regulations for the awarding of services [VOL], additionally notices must be made available centrally on the Internet via the Federal awarding platform.

"Regrettably, the reform fails to provide any real facilitation in daily practice," explained public procurement expert Dr. Ute Jasper, Partner at the Düsseldorf office of law firm Heuking Kühn Lüer Wojtek. "The cumbersome setup including the Act Against Restraints on Competition, Public Procurement Ordinance and the contracting regulations was maintained just as were many detailed rules which, in order to demonstrate reduction in bureaucracy, are now combined in a lower number of statutory provisions," Jasper continued. It was even more regrettable that the coalition agreement already announced the next public procurement reform.

Heuking Kühn Lüer Wojtek is a large independent German law firm with more than 200 lawyers. The firm has seven offices in Germany and offices in Brussels and Zurich. In the field of public infrastructure, it ranks among the leading law firms in Germany.

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