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COVID-19 And The Conduct Of Public Procurement In Malta – Government, Public Sector

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Malta:

COVID-19 And The Conduct Of Public Procurement In Malta


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Hot on the heels of the orders issued by the Superintendent of
Public Health on 13 March 2020 which were discussed here, the Department of Contracts,
Malta’s central government authority, has issued a circular to
all contracting authorities on how public procurement is to be
conducted in the coming weeks.

The main thrust of these directions is that the issue of public
procurement procedures, their evaluation and their award are to
continue as smoothly as possible without public officials meeting
in person. This includes discussion on requests for clarifications,
evaluation committee meetings and the signing of public
contracts.

The Department of Contracts has also directed contracting
authorities to accept certain documents, such as, bank guarantees,
in electric format for the time being, with the original to follow
in due course and once asked by the contracting authorities.

The Department of Contracts has also issued directions as to the
wording on remedies to be included in the recommendation of award
letter and rejection letters following the evaluation of a
competitive tender procedure. The wording to be included explicitly
instructs aggrieved bidders to file any letters of objection before
the Public Contracts Review Board by way of e-mail and to pay the
deposit fee by bank transfer. This has been discussed at length in
our other note here.

The Department of Contracts is yet to address issues arising
from the fact that decisions delivered by the Public Contracts
Review Board after 24 February 2020 and during this time remain
frozen in view of the wide scope of the orders issued by the
Superintendent of Public Health.

You can find the circular here.

The situation will be monitored closely and will issue updates
as the legal landscape develops.

The content of this article is intended to provide a general
guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought
about your specific circumstances.

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