The Directive 2014/24/EU on Public Procurement aimed to create an enabling legal framework for such a strategic approach. Acknowledging this, Eurodiaconia has been actively involved in the discussion of the changes introduced by the Directive, which are key to ensuring a sustainable provision of quality social services by our member organisations. Eurodiaconia action included guidance to our members aimed at ensuring that social criteria contained in the Directive were incorporated into national legislation during the transposition and implementation stages. Because such provisions were voluntary in some cases, the inclusion of social criteria has varied across EU countries. In some cases where the criteria have been adopted, they remain underdeveloped in procurement practice.
In this context, the European Commission released on 3 October a Public Procurement Package. The Package does not substitute or amend the legislation on public procurement put in place in 2014. Instead, it identifies outstanding issues in public procurement practice and develops specific initiatives to be delivered between now and the end of 2018.
This briefing concentrates on the provisions in the Package which are especially relevant for social services. In particular, a) the promotion of a greater uptake of social criteria; b) an increased professionalization of procurement officials; and c) a greater emphasis on joint procurement.
To know more about Eurodiaconia’s briefing on the new measures aimed ‘making public procurement work in and for Europe’, please check our briefing.