The Polish Public Procurement Law (2019, in force from January 2021) includes the following RBC objectives:

  • Environment

Poland adopted their fourth National Action Plan on Sustainable Public Procurement in 2017. This document promotes the inclusion of environmental and social considerations into the tendering process for contracting authorities.

  • Human rights, labour rights, people with disabilities/long-term unemployed people

The Council of Ministers of Poland adopted recommendations on social aspects in public procurement by government administration units. These recommendations encourage all government administration units to use social aspects to the widest extent possible within their public procurement procedures.

  • Integrity

The Government Programme for Counteracting Corruption is a Polish strategic framework that targets corruption issues, aimed at reducing corruption in procurement procedures. To this end, the Public Procurement Office co-operates with the Central Anti-Corruption Bureau, the National Appeals Chamber, the Office for Competition and Consumer Protection, the Main Adjudicating Committee in cases concerning violation of public finance discipline, the Ministry of Digitisation, the Ministry of the Interior and Administration and the Ministry of Finance.

  • The Polish government adopted a new public procurement law (entry into force in 2021); this new legal framework will also come with a new strategic document called National Purchasing Strategy including more references to different considerations and tender phases. Its aim is to better understand and apply environmental and social aspects in public procurement processes.

  • Regarding integrity considerations, contracting authorities are obliged to prepare contract award procedures in a manner ensuring fair competition and equal treatment of economic operators as well as in accordance with principles of proportionality, transparency, impartiality and objectivity.

  • In general, the use of environmental, social and integrity aspects in the tendering process is voluntary, with some exceptions. For instance, in the exclusion criteria, contracting authorities shall exclude economic operators and in some cases subcontractors that have been sentenced for a violation of environment rules, employee rights, human trafficking, and other criminal offences.

  • Contracting authorities can apply social aspects as part of non-price criteria related to for example fair trade or employment of people from disadvantaged groups.

  • When contracting authorities detect an abnormally low price in the awarded goods or services, an examination is carried out to cross-check the tender with the obligations arising from labour law and social security regulations.

  • Appropriate clauses such as control instruments and sanctions should be included in the contract to ensure the practical implementation of social aspects.

  • According to the National Action Plan on Sustainable Public Procurement, the Polish Public Procurement Office organises a series of training events, conferences, guidebooks and collection of best practices to inform and raise awareness to the relevant public procurement parties.

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