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Departmental Contracts

Volume 502: debated on Wednesday 9 December 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what criteria her Department uses in determining the award of contracts; and how much her Department and its predecessors spent on the advertisement of tenders for Government contracts since 1997. (303096)

The criteria the Department uses in determining the award of contracts is tailored specifically to individual contracts. Contracts are let through a fair and open competitive tendering process underpinned by EU principles of transparency, equal treatment, non-discrimination and proportionality. Contracts should deliver sustainable best practice commercial services and solutions that support the required departmental business outcomes, take account of current policies and provide best value for money.

Departmental spend on advertising contracts since 1997 is not collated centrally and could be provided only at disproportionate cost. Where appropriate, current contracts are advertised through the Official Journal of the European Union (OJEU) which is free of charge. Procurement teams will also consider advertising in external trade journals and other relevant publications if appropriate to individual contracts.