The Swedish Competition Authority has criticised Bollebygd Municipality after a breach of procurement regulations. The municipality’s procurement of modular housing in June 2016 was not advertised in accordance with regulations, and is therefore an unlawful direct procurement.
The municipality cited an exception for reasons of extreme urgency following the refugee crisis of 2015. However due to a change in circumstances, the Swedish Competition Authority does not believe this exemption to be applicable. The value of the agreement for the modular housing in question is approximately SEK 9,400,000.
The exception for reasons of extreme urgency must be assessed for each case based on the conditions at the time the agreement is entered. In this instance, the municipality had the means to identify the need and conduct a procurement as per the necessary regulations.
The procurement should therefore have been advertised following the Swedish Public Procurement Act to enable several actors to submit tenders. As no such advertisement was made, it is a case of an unlawful direct procurement. “It is important that procuring authorities are prepared in relation to procurements, especially if they intend to implement an exception,” explains Rikard Jermsten, Director General of the Swedish Competition Authority. “If public procurements are advertised in accordance with the regulations, this increases the opportunity to purchase the best, high-quality product at the best price”.
The regulatory decision by the Swedish Competition Authority expresses criticism towards Bollebygd Municipality.
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