20/09/2018

The House of Commons Library has recently published two Briefing papers on Brexit which will be of interest to those following the debate on the impact of Brexit on public procurement.

"Brexit:public procurement" was published on 5 September 2018 followed shortly after by "What if there's no Brexit deal?" published on 10 September, which includes notes on public procurement. 

"Brexit:public procurement" is an 18 page paper which outlines the current position and flags up policy choices available post-Brexit.  It includes a short section on the withdrawal agreement currently under negotiation  and intended to cover the post-Brexit transition period to 31 December 2020. The public procurement specific provisions in the draft withdrawal agreement are essentially agreed and allow for steady state in terms of application of the EU procurement rules for the transition period. This is, of course, subject to the full withdrawal agreement being finalised, which is far from certain at present.

The paper goes on to outline the position under the World Trade Organisation's Government Procurement Agreement (GPA) as well as the Uk government's application to continue to be part of the GPA post Brexit and Parliament's role in that process.The paper continues with sections on other trade agreements and future agreements with the EU. It then turns to more domestic matters, providing commentary on devolution and the potential for a greater role for devolved administrations, opposition views (Labour and SNP) and concludes with links to further information.

"What if there's no Brexit deal?" is a much lengthier paper, running to 172 pages, divided into 15 chapters covering a wide range of issues. These include chapters on preparations for a "no deal", constitutional implications, governance and economic impact as well as high profile issues such as the Irish border and security. The chapter on Trade includes a short section on public procurement commenting on the potential impact of a no deal, with the UK becoming a "third country" for the purposes of EU procurement and the mitigating effect of GPA membership.

These Briefing Papers, and other Briefing Papers on Brexit, can be accessed from the House of Commons Library website or by following the links to the papers below:

"Brexit:public procurement"

"What if there's no Brexit deal?"