The EU Brexit debate is in full swing with few vote swinging days left before we go to the polls. Both sides have exploited benefits of both staying and leaving the EU. Many pundits believe that from a UK public sector contract point of view it will translate to more money remaining in the UK. Contracts and jobs for local businesses might abound if this happens.
But is this true? By exiting the EU, will it mean more UK contracts will be awarded to UK companies? Or will it mean an end to the complicated EU Public Sector Procurement rules and the Official Journal of the European Union (OJEU)? To some degree the Public Sector Contract Regulations have provided a level playing field for all potential suppliers. The UK Government provided opportunities for smaller SME’s to enter the market which has been well received.
Our opinion is that whether or not we exit the EU, then the UK tendering rules will pretty much remain the same. Businesses will do business with the public sector pretty much as they do now. The current public sector procurement rules will, in all probability remain at least in the short term. So on the face of things, very little will change. OJEU rules will no longer be applicable… but, the Public Contracts Regulations 2015, will still apply.
There is some evidence that the EU procurement rules would still have a prevailing effect on UK procurement activity for some time following Brexit. Its the longer term realities that we are not sure of, and how if at all procurement would be effected.
If we leave the EU we are then open to set up trade deals across many of our natural world partners such as Australia and the USA. In addition other economies like China who could create some very good trading opportunities for us.