The Government approved the Proposal of the Public Procurement Law

“We intended to resolve the issues occurring in implementation of public procurement procedures by introducing the standards applied in the EU member states”, Ms Jelena Jovetić stated after the Government’s session.

Today the Government approved the Proposal of the Public Procurement Law, thereby creating a basis for further improvement of the overall public procurement policy, through introduction of full electronic communication and increased transparency within the system.

Acting director general of the Directorate for Public Procurement Policy in the Ministry of Finance, Ms Jelena Jovetić, said that, among the essential novelties introduced by the Law, the harmonization with the EU directives was very important.

“It represents our basis for further improvement of our progress within Negotiation Chapter 5 – Public Procurement as well as one of its closing benchmarks. The Law brings innovations regarding enhancement of regulatory framework for conclusion of public procurement contracts, where we strived to resolve issues in implementation of public procurement by applying standards of the EU member states”, stated Ms Jovetić after the Government’s session.

According to her, it is important to refer to the novelties contained in the new Law, primarily to enhancement of basic institutes within the framework of public procurement.

“We have singled out today only some of those simplifications that we have introduced for bidders in public procurement procedures, and they refer to submission of a statement from a business entity confirming that it meets the conditions for participation in the public procurement procedure, and the entire procedure of submitting evidence for participation is regulated in a new manner“, Ms Jovetić explained.

In that way, as she added, the competition in the public procurement system will be increased, and this will be the basis to eventually select the most favourable bidder after the bids are evaluated.

“The novelty in the Law is simplification of procedures, introduction of new time limits for actions of contracting authorities and modernization of the entire public procurement system through new institutes”, Ms Jovetić said.

In the bid evaluation system, the basic and only criterion will now be the most economically advantageous bid, which opens space for the contracting authorities to evaluate the bid not only on the basis of the lowest price, but also on other criteria, primarily the quality.

“Also, for the first time in Montenegrin regulatory framework, new provisions have been introduced with an aim of addressing contract modifications and potential termination of contracts“, Ms Jovetić stated.

She said that for the first time the Public Procurement Law regulates contract maangement and its entire execution, through submission of complete information on executed contracts which will be made publicly available.

“Increasing transparency is a very important segment of public procurement and Ministry of Finance will continue to fully apply the Public Procurement Portal in the forthcoming period, which will be upgraded to an electronic public procurement system through implementation of the project financed by IPA funds, with the support from the European Commission”, Ms Jovetić said.

She explained that the Law provides a basis for full electronic communication between contracting authorities and bidders, as regards both submission of the tender documentation and eventually the possibilities for the bidders to submit their bids electronically.

“The Law also introduces novelties regarding changes in submission of bids which do not comply with the tender documentation or where there are certain ambiguities, due to which they may be returned to bidders for changes, supplements or clarifications”, Ms Jovetić added.

These new provisions, as she assessed, will create conditions for more efficient spending of state funds and more rational spending of time in the public procurement procedure, where there will be no rejection of the valid bids caused by some formal errors.