More Procurement Act updates from government

Updates from the government on procurement reform are coming in thick and fast, ready for the Easter holidays!

Response to Summer 2023 Consultations

On Friday the response to the consultations of summer 2023 was published – you can read about that in our blog post here.

Procurement Regulations 2024

Today we have seen the “laying before Parliament” of the draft Procurement Regulations 2024 – which combine the two sets of regulations consulted on in summer 2023 into one, with some changes and updates.

As trailed in the response to the consultation, the provisions on calculating % activity and control levels for the in-house and joint collaborations has been removed, as have the provisions around disapplication of the s17 of the Local Government Act 1988.

In relation to Planned Procurement Notices, there appears to be a new requirement to state whether the open or competitive flexible process is to be used in the planned procurement.

More detail is available on how the use of supplier information on the central digital platform is to work: under Regulation 6(3) the authority must obtain confirmation, prior to the tender deadline,  from the supplier that it uploaded its up to date information. Prior to contract award, following Regulation 6(8), the authority must obtain further confirmation that the most up to date information is uploaded.

There are a few changes to Contract Award Notices (which commence the standstill period) and to Assessment Summaries (the new name for a standstill letter).

In a Contract Award Notice, by Regulations 27(2)(n) and (o), there now is only a need to identify unsuccessful suppliers individually by name where the contract value is over £5 million.

In an Assessment Summary, by Regulation 31(e), the requirement to explain why the score immediately above was not given, has been dropped. The concept of “strands”, where there was a requirement to explain how the scoring criteria were applied into different assessment “strands”, has also gone (perhaps as it was not very clear what this meant). There is now simply a requirement to explain:

  • the score determined for each award criterion; and
    • an explanation for that score by reference to relevant information in the tender, and
    • where an award criterion includes sub-criteria for assessment, an explanation of how the tender was assessed by reference to each sub-criterion, and
  • the total score and any sub-total scores.


We have also had sight of the first tranche of official guidance on the Procurement Act 2023 – covering:

  • Contracting authority definition
  • Covered procurement definition
  • Valuation of contracts
  • Mixed procurement
  • Exempted contracts
  • Thresholds

Guidance on transitional provisions is also expected shortly. The guidance notes published so far mainly confirm that little has changed in that topic area from the current position.

However we expect that future guidance on, for example, frameworks. dynamic markets, modifications to contracts, monitoring contract performance and so on, will shine a useful light on areas of the Act where there are question marks around how the new regime will work in practice.

Keep up to date

Do bookmark our Reform page to keep up to date. You might like to sign up too to our 5 in 25 webinar series where we are looking at a different aspect of the Act each time and the practical changes we can expect. If you have missed any so far, you can find them all here.

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