i-CITY, as a contracting authority, regularly decides to open up contracts as a central purchasing office in order to facilitate the acquisition of IT supplies and services for other contracting authorities.
These contracting authorities therefore benefit from more advantageous conditions due to a larger volume of purchases. They also do not have to organise their own procurement procedure for the purchase of sometimes complex supplies and services.
However, it should be pointed out that this contracting authority remains responsible for the performance of the obligations relating to the parts for which it is responsible, particularly the possible reopening of competition under a framework agreement.
The matter is regulated in Article 47 of the Law of 17 June 2016.
Eligible contracting authorities and agreement
It is important to note that i-CITY only opens its contracts to contracting authorities with a registered office in the Brussels Region.
Contracting authorities that fulfil this condition and are interested in participating in one or more of the contracts awarded by the central purchasing office signs a membership agreement with the i-CITY central purchasing office.
This agreement contains no obligation to place an order. It enables the beneficiary contracting authority to carry out IT acquisitions quickly and flexibly while reducing the costs and constraints associated with public procurement management in this area.
The central purchasing office in practice
- i-CITY and the beneficiary contracting authority sign a membership agreement for the central purchasing office
- The i-CITY central purchasing office is generally based on framework agreements. In accordance with Article 43 of the Law of 17 June 2016 on public procurement, a contracting authority may only use a central purchasing office based on a framework agreement if it is clearly identified in the call for competition or in the invitation to confirm interest. It is also important that each beneficiary of such a framework agreement establishes the volume of its potential order, although this does not oblige it to place such an order (the terms of the contract provide that there is no minimum order threshold). For this reason, for each contract opened centrally, the contracting authority will be asked to communicate its interest in being identified as a beneficiary and, where appropriate, the volume of the potential order.
- I-CITY awards the public contract or the framework agreement and informs the beneficiaries of the central purchasing office.
- The beneficiary contracting authority finalises its order by making an award and concluding a so-called subsequent contract or framework agreement, with due regard to the conditions laid down in the contract documents. No waiting period applies to this subsequent contract or framework agreement, nor is there any obligation to publish a contract award notice, regardless of the value of the order. The contractual relationship is established directly between the beneficiary contracting authority and the supplier or service provider, without any intervention from i-CITY which does not intervene, for example, in questions of delivery, guarantee and invoicing.
- Law of 17 June 2016 on public procurement (M.B. of 14 July 2016)
- Law of 17 June 2013 on the motivation, information and remedies in relation to [public] procurement, certain works, supply and service contracts and concessions (M.B. of 21 June 2013)
- Royal Decree of 18 April 2017 on the award of public contracts in the traditional sectors, (M.B. of 9 May 2017)
- Royal Decree of 14 January 2013 establishing the general rules for the execution of public contracts (M.B. of 14 February 2013)
Any questions? fee free to send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org !
i-CITY, as a contracting authority, can facilitate the acquisition of supplies or services intended for other contracting authorities by associating them with its own public contracts through its central purchasing office (law on public contracts of 17 June 2016).