In practice, we have noticed that our clients participating in public procurements could avoid a great number of disputes by abstaining from some most common mistakes relating to participation in public procurement procedures. To assist the suppliers, we recommend taking into account the following points:
Take your time and carefully look through all the procurement documents announced. Prior to the start of preparation of the proposal for a certain public procurement, it is necessary to thoroughly examine the content of the procurement documents and assess all requirements applicable to the qualification and experience of the suppliers, and to the proposal itself. Requirements applicable to the proposal may often be set out not only in the announcement of the procurement and in the terms and conditions of the procurement, but also in the annexes thereto (in the proposal form itself, technical specification, draft procurement contract).
Submit your questions. In case of any questions / ambiguities concerning the content of the procurement documents or in case of a necessity to obtain additional information, you should submit your questions to the contracting entity straightaway. If you find any requirement described in the technical specification being discriminatory, within the timeframe established by laws you should submit a claim to the contracting entity, instead of a question. You should formulate your questions to the contracting entity in a clear and unambiguous way.
Do not change or modify the documents prepared by the contracting entity. The proposal form and other documentation, attached to the procurement terms and conditions form an integral part of the procurement documents and may not be modified. If you determine a possible error, do not correct it yourself – approach the contracting entity with a request to revise or clarify the procurement documents instead.
Describe the proposed good and data thereof precisely. Describe the item you are proposing in an accurate and clear manner. Do not copy the requirement as formulated by the contracting entity, do not go with unprecise expressions, such as “it complies with the requirement” (“yes”, “it will”, “it is”, “we will do”, etc.) where specific values are required to be indicated. Indication of precise characteristics of a good in the proposal form and clear identification of the documents where this data can be found (with reference to the specific page, paragraph, item thereof, etc.), as well as respective markings therein may help the suppliers avoid errors and may speed up the process of proposals’ evaluation. Please note that usually the supporting documents are required to be translated into the Lithuanian language.
Make sure that you meet the applicable qualification requirements and that no exclusion grounds exist towards you. If in order to comply with the qualification requirements you are submitting the proposal along with your partners / rely on the capacities of other economic operators, all of them must be indicated in the proposal and copies of the relevant agreements concluded with these persons must be attached to the proposal. If the qualification and experience of certain experts are required, you should clearly list these persons. Please remember that not all requirements can be complied with by relying on the qualification of other economic operators (certain exceptions exist). You should evaluate the content of the ESPD.
Do not postpone the proposal submission until the very last minute. We recommend submitting the proposals at least 1 working day prior to the expiry of deadline established for the proposal submission. In this way the risk of not being able to submit the proposal documents on time due to a network or system failure is minimized, since such situations do not form a basis for the deadline extension, and you will not be entitled to submit your proposal after the expiry thereof.
Senior Associate, PRIMUS Legal Advisors