The Authority must put contracts – for services, goods, works or for the purchase or rental of a building – out to tender before concluding them. These invitations to tender satisfy the principles of sound financial management, equal access to suppliers and ensure transparency. Officers preparing contracts must define their characteristics, calculate their total expenditure and specify their duration. This process enables identification of the applicable tendering procedure – open, restricted or negotiated.
Tender documents include at least the terms of reference, a letter of invitation to tender, and a draft contract. Rules also govern the sending, receipt, opening and assessing of these documents, as well as the awarding of the public procurement contract.
All contracts awarded by the European Food Safety Authority follow a strict tendering procedure. Rules governing EFSA procurement are based on a wide range of provisions of European Community legislation.