The American Chamber of Commerce in Romania (AmCham Romania) in cooperation with the Romanian Competition Council and ANAP organized the 4th edition of the conference dedicated to competition in public procurement Competition Risks and Practical Remedies that brought together competition law practitioners in the AmCham community and representatives of the regulation and supervisory authorities in the field.
Through this event, AmCham Romania continues its efforts to facilitate a structured and constructive public-private dialogue on issues of major interest to the business community we represent. In particular, this edition of the conference focuses on competition risks and changes in approaching the public procurement process in the context of pandemic emergencies.
The President of the Competition Council, Bogdan Chirițoiu, reiterated the opening of the institution he leads for collaboration in order to improve the competition environment in Romania and encouraged the AmCham initiatives in this regard.
Regarding the organization of public procurement in the context of the pandemic, the Competition Council President mentioned that although the pandemic context may justify certain derogations, the necessary expertise and capacity accumulated at the level of local management units remains insufficient, therefore in the interest of ensuring fair competition and economic efficiency, it is recommended that public procurement should continue to be carried out by the central institutions, as regards certain medical equipment and products.
Regarding the evaluation of the compliance programs with the competition norms, President Chirițoiu announced stricter criteria for measuring the effectiveness of such programs, as well lower reduction quotas applied in case of compliance.
The President of the National Authority for Public Procurement (ANAP), Eugen Cojoacă referred to the ANAP actions for adapting the public procurement framework to the context of the health crisis, of which he mentioned having increased flexibility, working on the standardization of documentation in order to help avoid errors due to voluminous legislation to be observed, legislative updates that will facilitate the envisaged complete digitalization of the national public procurement landscape.
The conference presentations offered valuable information on the CC - ANAP joint opinion on exclusions in public procurement due to infringements of competition rules, the assessment of evidence in cases of competition in public procurement, ex-ante and ex-post control measures and instruments, by reference to the European Commission's Guidelines for the use of the public procurement emergency framework related to the COVID-19 crisis.
Through the working group dedicated to competition and state aid, AmCham Romania will continue the dialogue with the relevant institutions and decision makers in the field in order to contribute to the improvement of the legislative framework and to its transformation into a pillar of economic competitiveness that will attract investments in Romania.
AmCham warmly thanks our members for their support in organizing the 2020 edition of the competition conference: