Public authorities should be required to allocate tenders based on lifecycle impact of purchased goods and services

In a newly adopted report, the European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) calls for mandatory circular public procurement across Europe to break governments’ unsustainable consumption patterns.

With an annual expenditure accounting for some 14% (some 2 trillion EUR per year) of the EU’s overall GDP, governments are Europe’s biggest consumers. Their expenditure stems mainly from public tenders to purchase the works, services and supplies they need from companies.

To encourage public authorities to embrace more sustainable consumption patterns through lifecycle thinking, looking beyond short-term needs to the longer-term impacts of each purchase, considerable work has been done in the EU over the last few years.

The European Commission has since 2017 issued guidance in the form of Green Public Procurement criteria, phasing in circular economy elements to close energy and material loops in supply chains, while minimising negative environmental impacts and waste creation. Continue reading “Public authorities should be required to allocate tenders based on lifecycle impact of purchased goods and services”

EU and Mexico conclude negotiations for new trade agreement

The European Union and Mexico concluded today the last outstanding element of the negotiation of their new trade agreement. Trade Commissioner Phil Hogan and Mexican Minister of Economy Graciela Márquez Colín – in a phone call today – agreed on the exact scope of the reciprocal opening of public procurement markets and a high level of predictability and transparency in public procurement processes. With this, the EU and Mexico can advance to the signature and ratification of this agreement in line with their respective rules and procedures.

Commissioner for Trade Phil Hogan said: “While most of our efforts have been focused lately on tackling the coronavirus crisis, we have also been working to advance our open and fair trade agenda, which continues to be very important. Openness, partnerships and cooperation will be even more essential as we rebuild our economies after this pandemic. I am very pleased, therefore, that together with our Mexican partners, we share similar views and that our continued work could now come to fruition. Today’s agreement is clear evidence of our shared commitment to advance our agenda of partnership and cooperation. This agreement – once in force – will help both the EU and Mexico to support our respective economies and boost employment.” Continue reading “EU and Mexico conclude negotiations for new trade agreement”