A complaints procedure with an independent counter is mandatory for every client of tenders. The Ministry of Economic Affairs has now published an advisory document for these clients.

In the Netherlands, about 25 billion euros in products and services purchased through tenders. The then State Secretary Mona Keijzer made an effort to further professionalize tenders and to improve the legal position of entrepreneurs. Its proposals were adopted by the Council of Ministers at the end of last year. The aforementioned complaints procedure with a counter should make it easier for entrepreneurs who tender to draw attention to errors in tenders. From now on, award decisions will also be explained in more detail and the advice of the Committee of Tendering Experts will count more heavily than they do now.

Getting started The Ministry of Economic Affairs is working on the details and implementation of these measures. Amendments to the Public Procurement Act are also required. In the meantime, the ‘complaint handling guide for tenders’ should help clients to set up a complaints desk or, if it already exists, to improve it. . “This will enable contracting authorities to make progress in professionalizing their complaints desk. In this way, a professional relationship between entrepreneur and contracting authority can be further built”, according to the ministry.

Better Procurement Program The package of measures on which the guideline is based is not the only way in which the government is trying to take tendering practice to a higher level. This also happens with the Better Procurement Program (PBA), which runs from 2022 to 2022. PIANOo, the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Climate (EZK), VNG and VNO-NCW/MKB-Nederland work together in this. PBA wants to improve the procurement process through tenders, as well as the associated dialogue and collaboration. Last year it turned out that the parties that agree with this subject would really like to get started.

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