Saturday, 20 December 2008

EU procurement: Central purchasing body (CPB)

The EC (EU) Procurement Directive 2004/18/EC, also known as the Classic Directive, defines a central purchasing body (CPB) in Article 1.10:



10. A ‘central purchasing body’ is a contracting authority which:

— acquires supplies and/or services intended for contracting authorities, or

— awards public contracts or concludes framework agreements for works, supplies or services intended for contracting authorities.


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Contracting authority

The definition of a central purchasing body builds on the concept of a contracting authority.

You can turn to the blog post EU procurement: Contracting authority, at:

http://grahnlaw.blogspot.com/2008/12/eu-procurement-contracting-authority.html


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Reasons given

The Recitals of the Procurement Directive present reasons for the consolidated legislation and for novelties. Recital 15 describes the central purchasing body (CPB):

(15) Certain centralised purchasing techniques have been developed in Member States. Several contracting authorities are responsible for making acquisitions or awarding public contracts/framework agreements for other contracting authorities. In view of the large volumes purchased, those techniques help increase competition and streamline public purchasing. Provision should therefore be made for a Community definition of central purchasing bodies dedicated to contracting authorities. A definition should also be given of the conditions under which, in accordance with the principles of non-discrimination and equal treatment, contracting authorities purchasing works, supplies and/or services through a central purchasing body may be deemed to have complied with this Directive.


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Article 11

Procurement Directive Article 11 sets out the optional nature of central purchasing bodies, but complying with the procurement rules is mandatory:

Article 11
Public contracts and framework agreements awarded by central purchasing bodies

1. Member States may stipulate that contracting authorities may purchase works, supplies and/or services from or through a central purchasing body.

2. Contracting authorities which purchase works, supplies and/or services from or through a central purchasing body in the cases set out in Article 1(10) shall be deemed to have complied with this Directive insofar as the central purchasing body has complied with it.


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UK OGC

The United Kingdom Office of Government Commerce has published OGC Guidance on Central Purchasing Bodies (March 2008):

http://www.ogc.gov.uk/documents/OGC_Guidance_on_Central_Purchasing_Bodies.pdf

The updated six page brochure (pdf) gives advice to contracting authorities entering into agreements with central purchasing bodies.




Ralf Grahn