Social Economy Europe, along with a number of other social, environmental, business and trade union organisations, has issued a joint statement in reaction to the European Council Conclusions on public procurement. Published on 25 November, the Conclusions outline how efficient public procurement rules and practices, combined with increased public spending, can accelerate the economic recovery from the COVID-19 crisis and lead to a sustainable and more resilient EU economy.
The Council Conclusions are a timely reminder that public authorities need to take an ambitious and coherent approach to social and environmental sustainability in public procurement. In the midst of the COVID-19 crisis, it is more important than ever that every public contract financed by EU and national stimulus programmes is used as leverage to prevent abusive practices and to speed up a ‘people’s and planet recovery.
The joint statement welcomes the Council Conclusions, but urges the EU, national and local governments to implement them in an ambitious manner and to champion “buy sustainable” Action Plans setting out specific conditions that all bidders will have to meet if they are to be awarded a public contract and giving preference to contracts that are more sustainable. All relevant social and environmental organisations should be properly involved in defining contract requirements and in selecting suppliers, service-providers and contractors.
You can read the full statement here.