The reform of rules governing public procurement above the EU thresholds, which entered into force on 18 April 2016, aims to make procurement procedures more efficient, simple and flexible, and to facilitate the participation of small and medium-sized enterprises in procurement procedures. The reformed legal framework permits contracting authorities to make more use of public procurement to support strategic objectives. These particularly include social, environmental and innovative aspects. The new rules of the Act against Restraints of Competition also set out the main exceptions from procurement law. This ensures that municipalities in particular will have greater legal certainty when they provide public services.
More flexible procurement procedures at national level too
The new rules on procurement below the EU thresholds will take the flexible provisions in the new rules for procurement above the EU thresholds and apply them to the awarding of public contracts for supplies and services at national level. The new rules were announced in February 2017 and entered into force for the Federation on 2 September 2017 via the amendment to the administrative provisions regarding Section 55 of the Federal Budget Code. The Länder will adapt their budget rules to include the rules on procurement below the EU thresholds in the coming months.