6.The regulation of public procurement by public authorities and utilities for contracts over specified financial thresholds is currently set out in several EU Directives. This instrument sets out the framework for arrangements to replace those provisions after the UK’s exit from the EU in a manner compatible with the World Trade Organisation Agreement on Government Procurement, which the UK hopes to join in its own right within eight months of leaving the EU. Amongst other things, this instrument will replace the requirement to send notices to the EU Publications Office (for publication in the Official Journal via Tenders Electronic Daily), with a requirement to submit notices to a new, free, UK e-notification service. No information is yet available on how this new system will operate, and the Cabinet Office simply states that “the communications plan is to provide regular updates via the EU Exit Portal when it is launched in the new year.” These Regulations include transitional provisions in respect of European procurement procedures which straddle exit day, and the instrument makes no substantive changes to the restriction on the publication of notices at a local level, for example, on Contracts Finder, Sell2Wales or e-TendersNI. A parallel instrument deals specifically with procurement by the Ministry of Defence.
7.Existing EU Regulations established procedures for the national courts of EU Member States to deal with cross-border civil and commercial claims, providing standard, simplified procedures for obtaining and/or enforcing orders or judgments in certain types of claims. The European Enforcement Order (EEO) procedure enforces judgments from uncontested debt claims across different EU Member States; the European Orders for Payment (EOP) procedure pursues uncontested EU cross-border monetary claims; and the European Small Claims Procedure (ESCP) enables the making of cross-border claims with a value of up to €5000, which is designed for claimants to be able to use without needing to instruct lawyers. These procedures operate on a reciprocal basis, requiring cooperation between relevant national courts in participating EU Member States. In the event of ‘no deal’ with the EU, the continued, reciprocal, recognition and enforcement between EEOs, EOPs and ESCP judgments issued by UK and EU Member State courts will cease. Through the transitional provisions in the instrument, the EEO, EOP and ESCP provisions continue to apply to matters commenced under the EU Regulations prior to exit where enforcement is sought in the UK. The Ministry of Justice has explained that “this will allow for a smooth winding down of cooperation in cases live at the point of exit”.
4 HM Government, Prepare for EU Exit: [accessed 9 January 2019].