Policy Handbook for public procurement in Northern Ireland

This policy handbook is helpful for understanding the framework within which public procurement operates in Northern Ireland.

Purpose of the NI Public Procurement Policy Handbook

Apologies - the Policy Handbook is currently under review and is not available for download.

The handbook is designed to: 

  • provide greater clarification of the international and national context within which Northern Ireland Public Procurement Policy operates
  • set out more fully the structure and operation of procurement in the Northern Ireland public sector 
  • clarify the roles and responsibilities of key players within the procurement process

The handbook is not intended to replace an organisation's policy manual or sector specific guidance; however each organisation should ensure their policy and procedures are consistent with the handbook. 

The handbook supplements the NI Public Procurement Policy (agreed in May 2002) and is relevant to all organisations covered by the policy

As regards district councils, the Executive accepts that their different and separate framework of accountability must be recognised and, under existing legislation, compliance with this policy can only be on a voluntary basis. However as is the case for all NI public sector bodies, district councils are subject to UK and EU Procurement Legislation.

Topics covered by the Policy Handbook

Some of the topics covered by the handbook include: 

  • 'What is public procurement'?
  • the relevant legislative and policy framework
  • the relationship between the UK government and the NI Executive Committee
  • the governance structure for NI public sector procurement
  • a summary of the NI Public Procurement Policy document
  • an explanation of the role of Procurement Guidance Notes
  • the roles of various parties in the procurement process
  • standards expected of participants in the procurement process
  • complaint handling
  • how to ensure compliance with public procurement policy and legislation
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