All public sector procurement must comply with European and Scottish legislation. These do not allow contracts to be awarded on the basis of the location or size of a supplier.
The Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (TFEU) fundamental principles form the basis for the three 2014 European Procurement Directives which set out detailed rules for the purchase of goods, services and works by public bodies.
As of 18 April 2016, public procurement in Scotland is governed by a legal framework which includes:
Regulations implementing the 2014 European Procurement Directives into Scots law:
- The Public Contracts (Scotland) Regulations 2015;
- The Utilities Contracts (Scotland) Regulations 2016;
- The Concession Contracts (Scotland) Regulations 2016;
- Procurement Reform (Scotland) Act 2014; and
- The Procurement (Scotland) Regulations 2016.
More detail on procurement legislation is available on the Scottish Government Website.
For the purposes of the Supplier Journey, we use 'public procurement rules' as shorthand to describe the above legal framework.
Local Financial and Standing Orders
In practice, public procurement rules are embedded in a local organisation’s own policies and procedures - often called financial or standing orders. These will usually put in place local arrangements for dealing with contracts - including lower value contracts which may not be covered by procurement legislation.