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2.1. Overview

Procurements and grants are awarded according to strict rules. These help ensuring that suitably qualified contractors and grant beneficiaries are chosen without bias and that the best value for money or the best price is obtained, with the full transparency appropriate to the use of public funds.

Procedures established by the European Commission for procurement and award of grants under the relevant EU external aid programmes are consolidated in this Practical Guide. Any deviation from this Practical Guide and its annexes requires either a derogation or an exception from the relevant European Commission services in accordance with internal rules.

Before starting any tender or grant procedure, it must have been approved under a Financing Decision and, where appropriate, under a subsequent Financing Agreement. The funds must be available, except in the case of procedures with a 'suspension clause' (see section 2.4.12.).

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