BridgeNew procurement rules for public bodies will affect businesses, especially those that have a chequered past.

Under the new EU Public Procurement Directive, authorities placing contracts will be able to consider social criteria in making their decisions. Indeed, the Directive states that the price should no longer be the ‘central determining factor’ for placing contracts.

Public bodies will be required to exclude from consideration suppliers that have not met their tax obligations, and discretion will be introduced in setting criteria for such decisions. In some instances, profit-making entities will be able to be excluded from consideration. Organisations that have failed to comply with employment or social legislation may also be excluded.

It remains to be seen what impact the Directive will have in practice.