TEC exists as part of a wider community of procurement organisations and professionals operating within Higher Education, Further Education and other public bodies, with a common and shared membership. As such we are subject to the legislation which supports compliance in all aspects of Public Procurement, including the Public Contracting Regulations 2015 and, prior to Brexit, the wider rules governing procurement in the European Union, often referred to as OJEU. Whilst UK procurement policy has always largely mirrored that of the EU, an opportunity has arisen for the UK Government, through the auspices of the Cabinet Office, to carry out a review of regulations going forward. A consultation was launched in late 2020 and the procurement community in HE, FE and beyond has been working with member institutions to formulate a response to the Green Paper consultation, and one which both represents and complements the individual responses made by institutions and other stakeholder bodies. A combined response has now been made on behalf of this community in the form of TEC, the English Regional Consortia in the North West (NWUPC), North East (NEUPC), South and Midlands (SUPC) and London (LUPC) along with input from Wales (HEPCW) and Scotland (APUC). Our response, combining the themes expressed by the wider and individual membership who responded via the consortia along with some of the more individual thoughts and views, can be found on the UKUPC website using the link below.
TEC, as part of this group, take our responsibilities in supporting and promoting compliant procurement practice very seriously. We would like to preserve the significant benefits of collaborative procurement and whilst some simplification of the rules might be welcome, you will see from the response to the consultation that there is some concern over some of the proposals. We welcome this combined response and will keep TEC members, many of whom share membership with English and Welsh Consortia, informed on progress and responses. In reality, nothing is likely to change for 2 years, but a process has clearly begun. Keeping members informed on matters such as this is just another example of the added value of TEC membership.