Kungsbacka Municipality carried out an illegal direct award of contract when managerial positions were staffed by an external consultant. According to the Swedish Competition Authority, the contract should have been advertised. The Swedish Competition Authority is now demanding that Kungsbacka Municipality be sentenced to pay a procurement fine of SEK 140,000.
“The best public purchases are made when several suppliers have the opportunity to submit tenders,” says Rikard Jermsten, Director General of the Swedish Competition Authority.
In spring 2018, Kungsbacka Municipality needed a new manager for its Environment and Public Health Department. An agreement was concluded with a company to meet this need by means of a consultant. The assignment was then extended on four occasions and in due course also included the managerial position for the Buildings Department. There was no public notice ahead of the contract award. According to the Swedish Competition Authority, this constitutes an illegal direct award of contract.
According to the procurement rules, contract awards of the same kind must be aggregated. In this case the combined value totalled SEK 1,924,000, which exceeds the limit under which a direct award of contract may be permitted.
The Swedish Competition Authority, which is the advisory agency for procurement, is now asking the Administrative Court in Gothenburg to impose a procurement fine of SEK 140,000 on Kungsbacka Municipality.
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