Council of European Municipalities and Regions (CEMR)
European section of United Cities and Local Governments

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Local and regional governments as service providers

Public procurement - 23.05.2011

Value for money: CEMR calls for real reform of EU public procurement
The Council of European Municipalities and Regions (CEMR) calls on the European institutions to lead a real reform of the EU public procurement regime, bringing the policy back to its original objective of 'value for money".
In its call,* CEMR asks that the European Commission put forward a 'light" procurement regime, with a special focus on the principles of equality, transparency and non-discrimination put forward in the Treaty on the EU. Moreover, CEMR asks that the Commission allow for more flexibility when it comes to negotiations in all procurement procedures, as they have become too complex, leading to costly and burdensome administrative procedures, especially for local and regional authorities.
In an effort to simplify procurement policy, CEMR also calls on the European Commission to increase the threshold levels from which a European public procurement procedure becomes applicable, so as to achieve a balance between the procedure and result. Indeed, CEMR advocates for a 'freedom to procure", in line with the principle of local and regional self-government.
The use of information technology could notably play a major role in simplifying the public procurement regime as well as reduce administration and costs. Thus, CEMR calls for the alignment of e-procurement initiatives with the modernisation of public procurement policy.
Finally, CEMR advocates that public-public cooperation and service concessions should continue to be excluded from the application of the public procurement directives.
* CEMR's call is to be seen in the context of the consultation on the modernisation of EU public procurement policy and on the eve of the European Parliament Committee on the Internal Market and Consumer Protection (IMCO) public hearing on the modernisation of public procurement, to be held on Tuesday 24 May 2011.
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