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Business and sustainable procurement ...

... are inseparable. Only if companies are willing to design sustainable solutions and also to offer them in tenders can they be bought by the public clients.
It is important that companies are familiar with the framework conditions of the public clients and are informed about them in order to be able to offer. As a quick starting point for companies, we have put together some brief information below:

When purchasing, the public sector is bound by the requirements of the Procurement law bound. With the 2016 amendment to the procurement law, the consideration of social and environmental aspects regarding the over-threshold awardsin the Award principles included (Section 97 GWB, Paragraph 3). This regulation can also be found in the lower threshold allocation regulation, which basically applies to the federal government and some states.

The procedural principles of the award also include, for example, the principle of tendering in competition and the requirement of equal treatment, as well as the requirement of drawing lots (to guarantee medium-sized and SME funding). This means, for example, that all necessary information must be published transparently in advance and only product and company-neutral criteria may be required. This should create equal opportunities for all potential bidders and avoid susceptibility to corruption. From the perspective of sustainable procurement, however, the following can be deduced from this: Even if products are demonstrably more sustainable compared to other solutions, according to procurement law they may not be “just bought in” - because that would violate all the principles of procurement law. Rather, objective criteria must be used. This is an important difference between public and private purchasing.

Many authorities are already on the way and are trying to integrate sustainability aspects into their procurement processes and tenders. The structure of procurement law also poses challenges for procurement practice: It is not always easy to find the right balance between all the requirements. It is therefore particularly important that sustainable products and services are available on the market and are also offered in tenders. Because the availability of sustainable solutions is the basis and an important signal for the procurement system to advance the topic of sustainable procurement in practice. We would therefore like to encourage companies to develop sustainable solutions and offer them in public tenders.

As part of the Market research Procurers inform themselves about available solutions on the market. This is an important step in concretizing the performance. However, a sure instinct is required here too, as in the context of the principle of competition and transparency and the prevention of corruption, for example, too close an exchange with a single potential bidder is not “just like that” permissible.
As a company, it is best to find out where public sector offers are best placed within your industry or at your order advice center. These can be product-related trade fairs or conferences, for example.

Under this link of the procurement office of the BMI can be found further practical information for companies, for example a selection of publication media for tenders and the contact details for the order advice centers in the individual federal states.

At this point we have to point out that, as a competence center for sustainable procurement, we primarily support public clients and therefore unfortunately cannot offer any services such as training and consulting for companies.

As a company, do you have a particularly sustainable product or service to offer and would like to inform public clients about it?
We find sustainable solutions and products exciting and would also like to find out more so that we can inform public clients in the event of relevant inquiries. We are therefore happy to include the basic criteria and business models. However, please understand that we refrain from advertising individual companies or products due to our commitment to product and company neutrality.

If you have any questions about tenders, procurement procedures or the question of how best to inform public clients about their products, please contact your contract advice centers, which we have linked on the websites of the respective federal states.