The EEA Agreement establishes a single market in public procurement. This creates significant opportunities for companies within the EEA as they can compete for government contracts throughout the Internal Market. It also benefits taxpayers, as increased competition lowers the costs of public purchases of goods and services. The public procurement legislation obliges public authorities and entities to apply certain procedures when processing contracts for supplies, services and works with a value exceeding certain thresholds. These thresholds are periodically updated (lowered), which further increases the competition in the EEA procurement market. The procurement rules aim to secure equal treatment and fair competition among all suppliers, service providers and contractors established within the EEA. The legislation contains clauses to ensure that the rules are enforced throughout the EEA.
The EFTA Working Group on Public Procurement meets when required and follows closely all EU decision-making on public procurement issues, mainly through participation in the European Commission’s Expert Group on Public Procurement (EXPP), the Expert Group on eProcurement (EXEP) and the Economic and Statistical Working Group (ESWG).
Article 65 (1) and Annex XVI of the EEA Agreement cover public procurement.
DG Internal Market, Industry, Entrepreneurship and SMEs (DG GROWTH) - Public procurement