Publication of Calls for Tender - DG REGIO

At this site you will find all the tendering documents for calls for tender by open procedure issued by the Directorate-General for Regional Policy.

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Those interested should consult the site and published documents regularly.

Information about all European Union calls for tender is available in the 24 official EU languages from the TED website (Tenders Electronic Daily).

List of calls for tender

N° 2018CE16BAT055 - Falling into the middle-income trap? A study on the risks for EU regions to be caught in a middle-income trap and the factors that are holding back the development of middle-income economies in the EU

Official Journal of the European Union: 2017/S 053-097330 ( 06/08/2018 )

Contract Notice PDF File en

Invitation PDF File en

Specifications PDF File en

Draft contract PDF File en

Declaration of honour DOC File en

Information and Forms for Experts

N° 2018CE16BAT051 - Demography and Health by Degree of Urbanisation

Official Journal of the European Union: 2017/S 053-097330 ( 30/05/2018 )

Contract Notice PDF File en

Invitation PDF File en

Specifications PDF File en

Draft contract PDF File en

Declaration of honour DOC File en

Information and Forms for Experts

N° 2018CE16BAT050 - Projecting global population grids to 2100

Official Journal of the European Union: 2017/S 053-097330 ( 29/05/2018 )

Contract Notice PDF File en

Invitation PDF File en

Specifications PDF File en

Draft contract PDF File en

Declaration of honour DOC File en

Information and Forms for Experts

N°2017CE160AT124 - EU-Argentina Regional Policy Cooperation on Multi-Level Governance Systems – Institution and Capacity Building on Regional Policy Programming and Implementation

Official Journal of the European Union: 2017/S 053-097330 ( 14/05/2018 )

Contract Notice PDF File en

Invitation PDF File en

Specifications PDF File en

Draft contract PDF File en

Declaration of honour DOC File en

Question

The tender specifications of call N° 2017CE160AT124 mention on page 17 under heading 4.2.4. Technical and professional capacity criteria and evidence
A. Criteria relating to tenderers that

‘Tenderers (in case of a joint tender the combined capacity of all members of the group and identified subcontractors) must comply with the criteria listed below. The evidence must be provided only on request. The project references indicated below consist in a list of relevant services provided in the past three years, with the sums, dates and clients, public or private, accompanied by statements issued by the clients.’

The above suggests that the evidence for the technical and professional capacity criteria including the statements by clients and CVs do not need to be submitted as part of the proposal but must be provided only on request. Is the interpretation correct?

Answer

Yes, the interpretation is correct.


Question

We note the fact that this contract is open only to companies established in EU/EEA and GPA countries - however as the target of the work to be delivered under the contract relates to Argentina, could you clarify if entities legally registered in Argentina can formally take part in this contract?

Answer

Economic operators established in Argentina do not have access to this procurement procedure as tenderers or co-tenderers, as Argentina does not meet the criteria laid down in Articles 119 (rules on access to procurement) and 120 (Procurement rules of the World Trade Organisation) of the Financial Regulation (FR) . The rules of access to the market do not apply to subcontractors; hence, in principle all economic operators can act as subcontractors of other economic operators who have themselves access to the EU procurement procedures.


Question

As a Belgian based legal entity part of a Global network, can we assume that we may rely on the capacity of our local firm in Argentina (regardless of the legal nature of the links between us) in as much that this reliance is not needed to satisfy the selection criteria?

Answer

It is not clear what is meant by "rely on the capacity". Reference is made to answer 1/2 above.


Question

In section 2.3.4 Final Workshop - Task 4, of the Tender Specifications there is mention of the role of national and regional authorities (...). Is appropriate assistance expected to be provided to the contractor by Argentinian national and regional authorities also for properly carrying out the other Tasks foreseen by the Tender Specifications? Namely, will local authorities be making available appropriately equipped meeting rooms / training rooms for onsite activities, as well as appropriate IT equipment to those who will be directly involved in the capacity building programme activities delivered off site (i.e. equipment for attending to webinars, video conferences, etc.).

As you can imagine, in case local authorities will not be providing appropriate logistics/infrastructure, additional external costs must be foreseen in the project's budget so to eventual cover these expenses (such as for renting training rooms, etc).

Answer

Local authorities are expected to make available appropriately equipped meeting rooms / training rooms, as well as related IT equipment.


Question

The tender specifications of call N° 2017CE160AT124 mention on page 18 under heading 4.2.4. Technical and professional capacity criteria and evidence:

"Criterion A3: The tenderer must prove capacity to draft reports in English and Spanish.

Evidence A3: The tenderer must provide one document of at least 10 pages (report, study, etc.) in English and Spanish that it has drafted and published or delivered to a client in the last three years. The verification will be carried out on 5 pages of the document."

The above suggests that the evidence for the technical and professional capacity criteria including the reports (1 in English and 1 in Spanish) do not need to be submitted as part of the proposal but must be provided only on request. Is the interpretation correct?

Answer

Tenderers (in case of a joint tender the combined capacity of all members of the group and identified subcontractors) must comply with the criteria listed under heading 4.2.4. A. The evidence must be provided only on request.

The project references consist in a list of relevant services provided in the past three years, with the sums, dates and clients, public or private, accompanied by statements issued by the clients.


Information and Forms for Experts

N°2018CE160AT017 - Pilot project: Measuring what matters to EU Citizens: Social Progress in the European Regions

Official Journal of the European Union: 2017/S 053-097330 ( 30/04/2018 )

Contract Notice PDF File en

Invitation PDF File en

Specifications PDF File en

Draft contract PDF File en

Declaration of honour DOC File en

Additional document: DOC File en

Question :

In the Tender Specifications, it is indicated that Selection criterion 4 will be the Criteria-based identification of potential EU regions benefiting from the activities. The document also states that the selection of the regions will be finalised during the kick-off meeting and then confirmed in the inception report. Could you clarify whether the tender should already include any proof of the proposed regions interest and commitment in joining the pilot? Since regions will only be selected after the award of the tender, are contractors supposed to include in the financial offer costs and expenses linked to the activities of the regions as well or should they limit that to the technical assistance provided by the contractor?

Answer:

The Tenderers are expected to present a list of candidate regions following the criteria specified in Section 2.2, point a, of the Tender Specifications. As far as how the list of candidate regions is established, the tender specifications do not limit the tenderers further than stipulated.

From the list of candidate regions, the Tenderers are free to define a maximum number of regions included in the price offer, provided that it is no less than five. This maximum number of regions cannot be changed after the submission of the tender.

The final list of regions eventually involved in the project will be decided together with DG REGIO during the kick-off meeting where the Tenderer will be asked to provide evidence of the commitment of the selected regions.


Question :

Regarding the Pilot project: Measuring what matters to EU Citizens: Social Progress in the European Regions, and following from the specifications remarks on UK tenders:

“For tenderers from the UK: Please be aware that after the UK's withdrawal from the EU, the rules of access to EU procurement procedures of economic operators established in third countries will apply to tenderers from the UK depending on the outcome of the negotiations. In case such access is not provided by legal provisions in force tenderers from the UK could be rejected from the procurement procedure.”

I have the following question:

The same issues apply for UK based partners, in a consortia led by a EU member state?
In other words, should I be worried to include a Northern Ireland based partner in a consortia led by a Spanish University, for instance?

Answer:

Yes, after the UK's withdrawal from the EU, the rules of access to EU procurement procedures of economic operators established in third countries will apply to tenderers and members of consortia from the UK depending on the outcome of the negotiations. In case such access is not provided by legal provisions in force tenderers and members of consortia from the UK could be rejected from the procurement procedure.


Question :

Related to the tender mentioned above may I kindly as for the following clarification:

On page 14 of the ToR the sub-criterion 1.5. says “Synergies with existing EU initiatives in this field”. What are you referring at with “...EU initiatives in this field”?

Answer:

The specification "EU initiatives in the field" refers to other existing initiatives at the European and/or the EU regional level aiming at providing measures of development that move beyond the Gross Domestic Product. For example, the Tenderer(s) is expected to link the EU-SPI indicators and sub-components to the SDGs indicators covering social aspects, as also indicated in Section 2.2 of the Tender Specifications. (https://ec.europa.eu/europeaid/policies/sustainable-development-goals_en )


Question :

The section 2.2 “General and specific objectives” indicates that the contractor shall perform, among others, the following task: “select a consortium of regions”. It is not clear to us here whether the consortium of regions needs to be fully selected prior to the implementation of the project or if we could finalise the selection procedure during month one of the implementation of the project.

Section 2.3.3 “Deliverables” indicates that the deliverable 1-inception report - should present the selection of regions included in the consortium. Since the inception report needs to be submitted one month after the signature of the contract, we still wonder if: 1) we need to select the regions during the proposal phase, or 2) we could have the flexibility of pre-selecting regions during the proposal phase and finalise the selection during month 1.

Answer:

The Tenderers are expected to present a list of candidate regions following the criteria specified in Section 2.2, point a, of the Tender Specifications. As far as how the list of candidate regions is established, the tender specifications do not limit the tenderers further than stipulated.


Question :

Could the Commission please clarify if there are specific organisations or institutions, based in Europe or globally, which are excluded from applying for this tender.

Answer:

As regards organisations or institutions eligible to participate to this call please note that according to point 1.1 of the Tender specifications ' this procurement procedure is open on equal terms to all natural and legal persons coming within the scope of the Treaties, as well as to international organisations.

It is also open to all natural and legal persons established in a third country which has a special agreement with the Union in the field of public procurement on the conditions laid down in that agreement. Where the plurilateral Agreement on Government Procurement concluded within the World Trade Organisation applies, the participation to this procedure is also open to all natural and legal persons established in the countries that have ratified this Agreement, on the conditions it lays down.


Information and Forms for Experts

No 2018CE16BAT060 - Provision of and Support to Training on the Legal Framework and Policy Areas Covered by the European Structural and Investment Funds (ESIF) in the 2014-2020 programming period and post-2020 period

Official Journal of the European Union: 2017/S 053-097330 ( 26/04/2018 )

Contract Notice PDF File en

Invitation PDF File en

Specifications PDF File en

Draft contract PDF File en

Declaration of honour DOC File en

Additional document: DOC File en

Question :

"Specifications”, page 16, points (3) and (4) - could you please clarify the exact meaning of “ past three years “ for principal services and “ last three years” for average annual manpower? Are they to be understood as 36 months counting back from the submission deadline of 30 May 2018 ( i.e. May 2015 till May 2018) or as the last three completed calendar years plus the current year ( i.e. January 2015 till May 2018 ) ?

Answer:

The last 3 years are counting from the deadline for receipt of offer (30 May 2018).


Question :

It is obvious that the Criteria relating to the tenderer do inter alia refer also to the individual project managers/ experts/ trainers made available for the work. This is also evident from some of the types of proofs to be provided with the offer such as CVs and summary table. At the same time the Criteria relating to the team also refer to the individual project leader/experts, further distinguishing between senior and junior. Could you please clarify how the two sets of criteria, which clearly apply to the same pool of individuals, should be interpreted? For example, in accordance with Criteria for the team a senior/junior expert should have at least 2 years of experience in the provision of training or teaching. At the same time the Criteria to tenderers require all the individuals whose CVs are to be presented to have at least 5 years of experience in organising and delivery trainings. Is it then the case that a person with 2,5 years of training experience would qualify under Criteria for the team even for senior expert but would not qualify under Criteria for the tenderer and hence could not be included in the summary table ? if the Criteria for the tenderer clearly related to individuals ( since part of the required evidence is CV) do not regard the project leader/experts mentioned under " team" , then which individuals do they regard ? In case they refer to the same project leader/experts as in "team " , how are they do be applied in combination with Criteria to the team since the two sets of criteria have different minimum standards for the same requirement ( for example training experience )

Answer:

There is indeed a mistake in the evidence to be provided.

  • knowledge of legislative proposals for cohesion policy 2014-2020;
  • professional experience in all aspects of the cohesion policy programming process, including negotiation, adoption, implementation, management, monitoring and evaluation of programmes. 
  • relevant knowledge of European cohesion policy and its inter-relationship with the Europe 2020 Strategy and other EU policies, including the flagship initiatives and headline targets,

apply for both the tenderer (universities/companies) and the team delivering the services

For criteria relating the tenderers(A), the evidence should be:

  1. A summary table indicating the project managers and the experts/trainers made available for the work. The proportion of the contract which the tenderer may intend to subcontract will have to be indicated in the offer.
  2.  A list of the principal services provided in the past three years, with the sums, dates and recipients, public or private. Tenderers should provide evidence of having organised training seminars in a relevant area.
  3.  A statement of the average annual manpower and the number of managerial staff of the service provider or contractor in the last three years.

For criteria relating the team delivering the service (B), the evidence remains unchanged.


Question :

We would like to participate in this tender and we received two different invitations to join a consortium (from two different potential partners).

Is it possible to start in both consortia at the same time for the same tender or do we need to decide to take our chance only with one of them?

Answer:

Economic operators are free to organise themselves as they so wish, i.e. they can submit a tender as a single tenderer, or participate in a joint tender, or be a subcontractor. No limitation can be set as regards joint tendering and subcontracting.

As a matter of principle, the direct participation (consortium) or indirect participation (subcontracting) of one and the same economic operator in more than one tender for the same procurement procedure is acceptable.


Question :

In how far is it possible to invite as experts staff working in:

  • EU Commission
  • one of EU Agency
  • organisation (co-)financed by the EU funds?

Answer:

EU Commission/Institutions and EU Agency staff members cannot be invited as experts.

For staff members from other organisations it is possible.


In the annex “specimen” the following is defined:

The Framework contractor’s remuneration is composed by:

  • the fees resulting from estimated number of working days for each category of experts multiplied by the unit prices.
  • the reimbursable items - Per diem is not included.

2. Training delivery :daily rate per trainer in Brussels including all travel and subsistence expenses 

4) The Reimbursable items not included in the fees are the following:

  • Travel costs for the inter-city journeys (both international and inside the country) of experts away from their usual place of residence which are exclusively realised and authorised in the framework of the assignment, inclusive visa costs.

Also, in the technical specifications the following is defined:  

Part E: Financial offer:

The quoted price must be a fixed amount which includes all charges (including travel for Brussels and subsistence). Travels are not refundable separately, except in case of training outside Brussels.

4.2.3. Modalities of Payments

Payment for organization of training and fees will be based on a lump-sum.

Payment of travel costs for the inter-city journeys will be based upon presentation of supporting documents.

Question 1:

Could you kindly clarify if there is a mistake in the document concerning the instructions for calculation of prices. We understand that in the table under 2. Training delivery prices including per diems and flight costs to and from Brussels shall be indicated. The other instructions seem to say otherwise, though.

Answer 1:

When trainings are delivered in Brussels, no travel costs will be reimbursed separately.

Question 2:

Shall travel costs for in- and outbound flights for mobilization be indicated in the financial offer? If so, shall the template for the financial offer be adapted accordingly?

Answer 2:

Travel costs will be reimbursed upon presentation of supporting documents.  Without precise information on location, it is not possible to indicate them now in the financial offer of the framework contract.  These costs will be agreed later when specific contracts are awarded.

Question 3:

Do we understand correctly that the lumpsum for training organization shall be presented as a lumpsum per day of organization as organizational efforts may vary depending on the length of the training?

Answer 3:

It depends on items the tenderer wants to offer for this task.  E.g. Unit for the preparation of training can be "day of organization" while the Unit for course documentation can be "a set of document", etc…  It is up to the tenderers to add lines and define units depending on their bid.

Question 4:

On page 12 of the tender specifications the following is defined:

Within 21 calendar days from the dispatch of the request for a specific contract, the contractor must submit by e-mail, to the contracting authority, his/her proposal duly dated and signed. 

On page 8 of the tender specifications the following is defined:

Training seminars could be requested with less than three weeks' notice. 

Do we understand correctly that the service provider would have 21 days to prepare and submit the offer and after the contract award a period up to 21 days to organize the training, mobilize trainers and conduct the training?

Answer 4:

The framework contractor will have indeed 21 days to prepare and submit a specific offer.  However in exceptional cases, this deadline may be shorter.


Information and Forms for Experts

N° 2017CE16BAT094 - Mid-term evaluation of the Jaspers initiative in 2014-2020

Official Journal of the European Union: 2017/S 053-097330 ( 02/03/2018 )

Contract Notice PDF File en

Corrigendum ( 21/03/2018 ) - Corrigendum Specifications PDF File en - 2018/S 043-093206

Invitation PDF File en

Specifications PDF File en

Draft contract PDF File en

Declaration of honour DOC File en

Additional document: DOC File en

Question

Section 4.2.2 of the Tender Specifications asks the tenderers to submit a "declaration on the absence of conflict of interest of the team in relation to the evaluation should be submitted", which we understand to refer to the tender document titled Annex 4: Declaration of absence of conflict of interests and of confidentiality.

Could you confirm that the document is to be signed by each individual member of the team proposed for delivery of the services subject to the procedure?

Answer

Yes, we confirm.

Question

Could you confirm that the document does not have to be signed by the legal entity that is tendering for the contract subject to the procurement procedure?

Answer

Yes, we confirm.


Question

The Declaration form provided in Annex 4 specifies a number of circumstances (clause I.1), the existence of which disqualifies the signatory of the declaration on grounds of a conflict of interest. Could you please clarify more precisely the scope of these circumstances. Specifically:

  • a. Regarding the circumstance of "Direct benefit in case of advice on development of a new policy"
    • 1. Could you clarify the understanding and scope of the term "direct benefit" in this context?
    • 2. Could you define the scope for "development of a new policy"? Is it to be understood only as a new policy developed based on the results of the services provided subject to the contract?
  • b. Regarding the circumstance of "Direct benefit in case of acceptance of the tender"
    • 1. Could you clarify whether the term "acceptance of the tender" refers to the admission of the tender to the tender evaluation stage or does it refer to the award of the contract?
    • 2. Could you clarify the meaning and scope of the term "direct benefit" within the context of the case defined under 2(b)(i)?
  • c. Regarding the circumstance of "Close family relationship with any person representing the EIB"
    • 1. Could you define the scope of "close family relationship"?
    • 2. Could you define the understanding of "representative" of the EIB with respect to the persons referred to in the above?
  • d. Regarding the circumstance of "Current involvement in a contract or collaboration with the EIB":
    • 1. Could you define the scope of "involvement in a contract"?
    • 2. Specifically, could you confirm whether "involvement in a contract [...] with the EIB" includes a situation in which an individual holds the position of a manager or director of a Framework Agreement between a legal entity tendering for the present procurement procedure and the EIB, but is not involved in the actual delivery of services under the Framework Agreement?
    • 3. Could you clarify whether this circumstance refers to involvement (cf. definition to be provided under 2(d)(i)) in any type of contract with the EIB or specifically contracts related to the activities to be evaluated under the present contract?
    • 4. Could you clarify the meaning (and provide examples) of "involvement in [...] collaboration with the EIB"?

Could you clarify whether the declaration form and the procedure through which it will be assessed provide for a situation in which the explanation provided by a signatory of the declaration on account of the signatory being subject to one or more of the disqualifying circumstances listed under clause I.1 can be considered sufficient justification for absence of conflict of interest?

Answer

The "Declaration of Absence of Conflict of Interests and of Confidentiality" leaves it to the tenderer's self-assessment as to whether he or she falls into any of the circumstances mentioned in that declaration. A thus identified potential conflict of interest may not in itself lead to non-attribution of the contract, if the tenderer has set up and described in the tender appropriate measures to mitigate the risks to the interests of the Union. Tenderers are invited to describe precisely and succinctly all situations which may objectively be perceived as a conflict of interest of an expert in relation to the specific assignment to be performed under this call. Should this be the case, the tenderer is invited to indicate appropriate mitigating measures taken to address such situations.


Question

Could you clarify whether the assessment of explanations provided regarding (potential) existence of one of the circumstances referred to in clauses I.1 and I.2 will take into account conflict of interest mitigation measures undertaken as part of the quality control system to be implemented by the tenderer for the delivery of services?

Answer

Indeed, mitigation measures will be taken into account should a potential conflict of interest exists.


Question

Declaration of honours and conflict of interest: there are some points on which we need some clarification:

In the document it is stated that "Current involvement in a contract or collaboration with the EIB" and "Involvement in a contract or collaboration with the EIB within the previous three years" are considered as disqualifying criteria.

In the process of defining potential conflict of interest, how should the following situation be taken into account:

  • The expert is mentioned in a framework contract agreement with the EIB but not involved in a specific assignment
  • The expert is /has been involved in independent evaluation assignments with the EIB?

Answer

The "Declaration of Absence of Conflict of Interests and of Confidentiality" leaves it to the tenderer's self-assessment as to whether he or she falls into any of the circumstances mentioned in that declaration. A thus identified potential conflict of interest may not in itself lead to non-attribution of the contract, if the tenderer has set up and described in the tender appropriate measures to mitigate the risks to the interests of the Union. Tenderers are invited to describe precisely and succinctly all situations which may objectively be perceived as a conflict of interest of an expert in relation to the specific assignment to be performed under this call. Should this be the case, the tenderer is invited to indicate appropriate mitigating measures taken to address such situations.


Question

Clarification about Evaluation Criterion A4 ("Criteria Relating to Tenderers") as presented in the tender documentation for the abovementioned project. According to tender documents, Criterion A4 requires that the tenderer is able to "prove its capacity to research, collect and analyse information and data in all countries benefiting from JASPERS assistance (19 EU Member States and four IPA country beneficiaries)".

The evidence required to satisfy this criterion is "references for five projects delivered in the last 3 years"...... that "must cover all beneficiary countries of JASPER assistance".

We wonder whether it might be possible to make the evidentiary requirement on this criterion a little more flexible? In particular, would it be possible to demonstrate an ability to collect and analyse data in JASPER countries by referring to expert networks, institutional partners and the like rather than simply presenting previous projects (which may or may not confirm an actual ability to manage data related to this project)?

If it is not possible to offer greater flexibility in this, can you confirm whether tenderers who cannot demonstrate experience in all 23 countries in the last 3 years will be excluded from the tender?

Answer

A corrigendum will be published modifying Evidence A4 in Article 4.2.4 'Technical and professional criteria and evidence" of Tender specifications as follows:

"The tenderer must provide references for five projects delivered in the last three years. The combination of the projects will cover at least 8 beneficiary countries of JASPERS assistance, of which at least one IPA country. For the other beneficiary countries, the tenderer will provide evidence on its capacity to research, collect and analyse information and data for instance on the basis of expert networks, partners or local contacts".


Question

We note the specific guidance provided to tenderers from the UK and would be grateful for further clarification. In particular, given the timing of the procurement procedure and its relationship to the timing of negotiations surrounding the UK’s withdrawal from the EU, is it possible that tenders from UK-based organisations will be excluded from the procurement process before the outcome of the negotiations is known?

Answer

Under the current state-of-play tenderers from the United Kingdom can submit tenders like any other potential tenderer from anywhere else in the European Union; contracts signed before the withdrawal of the United Kingdom with economic operators from the United Kingdom having been concluded following a procedure aiming at awarding them to the economic operators offering the lowest price or cost or the best price-quality ratio and subject to the outcome of the negotiations, in particular on public procurement, should be implemented in accordance with their terms until their end-date including modifications where necessary. However, should the tender procedure not be concluded before the withdrawal of the United Kingdom from the European Union, tenderers may be rejected from the procurement procedure, subject to the outcome of the negotiations on the withdrawal of the United Kingdom.


Question

Under section 4.2 (page 29), the specification document states that "the tenderer may rely on the capacities of other entities, regardless of the legal nature of the links which it has with them". Can you confirm that a tenderer based in an EU Member State (other than the UK) may rely on the legal, regulatory, economic, financial, technical and professional capacity of a parent organisation based in the UK?

Answer

If the parent organisation is in the UK and the affiliated entity is in one of the other 27 EU Member States, the latter can participate in the call on equal terms with anyone else, i.e. the terms of the call will apply to this entity, and it will be with this entity the contracting authority will sign the contract. Reference is further made to sections 1.4 (joint tenders) and 1.5 (sub-contracting) of the tender specifications of the call. If it is the UK-based parent organisation with whom the contracting authority signs the contract, the situation as described under Q1 applies.


Question

According to sec. II.9.5 and II.24 of the draft contract the contracting authority and the European Anti-Fraud Office shall be entitled to conduct checks and audits. This shall include the right to access to sites and premises of the contractor. As a professional audit firm, the contractor is bound to legal and contractual confidentiality obligations. Is it therefore true, that checks and audits within the contractor sites and premises according to Art. 24 of the FWC shall be conducted only to the extent necessary and that this shall never force the contractor to be in breach with its legal and contractual confidentiality obligations towards its clients?

Answer

Article II.9.5. does not refer to auditors but the contractor's personnel and to the access to data of the contractor’s personnel.

Regarding Article 24, yes, if an audit is conducted in the framework of the contract 2017.CE.16.BAT.094, checks and audits within the contractor sites and premises will be conducted only to the extent necessary and on the performance of the contract. The contractor will not be forced to be in breach with its legal and contractual confidentiality obligations towards its clients.


Question

Section 4.2.4 B of the Tender Specifications indicates that the proposal should include a Team Leader and Project Manager and the description of the two roles is partly similar (with the difference that the Team Leader should also show demonstrated skills in terms of evaluation methods and knowledge of policy evaluation). Could you further clarify the difference between the two roles?

Answer

The Team Leader is responsible for the content, methodology and quality control for the study: he holds the final responsibility on the deliverables and results of the mission. The Project Manager is responsible for the process and has a management role in the mission (main contact point for the Commission). We require the same policy knowledge for the Team Leader and for the Project Manager. Yet, for the Team Leader we additionally require specific qualifications in evaluation methods, as he/she will hold the extra responsibility to coordinate the quality of the evaluation, a responsibility which the project manager does not have and for which we therefore would not require these specific skills. Please also note that as for the Team Manager we require 5 years' experience in managing a team, we have not stated the same requirement for the project manager.


Question

Section 1.7 of the Tender Specifications indicates that "In the course of the procedure tenderers may be requested to register and provide a Participant Identification Code (PIC, 9-digit number), serving as the unique identifier of their organisation in the Participant Register. Tenderer(s) will receive instructions on how to create a PIC in due time." Can you please clarify if we need to obtain a specific PIC related to this procedure (our organisation has a PIC code from previous tendering procedures)?

Answer

If a tenderer is already registered with a PIC, the tenderer needs only to give information of the existing PIC.


Question

Section 4.2.4 A of the Tender Specifications indicates that "the project references indicated below consist in a list of relevant services provided in the past three years". Could you please clarify whether partially completed/ongoing assignments for which a certificate is already available from the client can be included and will be taken into consideration in the evaluation of the bids?

Answer

Also services which are not yet fully delivered but sufficiently advanced can be taken into account. The accomplishment of these services should be at a level permitting a qualitative assessment of the service (i.e. only a signed service contract or a service the delivery of which has just started would not in itself be sufficient). For the partially completed assignments, a certificate should be available from the client on deliverables that could prove significant progress in the study (intermediate report delivered at the step before the final report). The contracting authority reserves it right to deem any such reference not sufficiently substantiated.


Question

Criterion B2 at page 32 of the Tender Specifications states that the team leader experience should cover 15 countries. Can you please clarify if these countries should be covered by one single project of at least 250.000 Euro value or if the 15 countries experience is expected to be covered by the professional experience in its whole?

Answer

For clarification: Criterion B2 concerns the Project Manager, while the Team Leader relates to B1.

The Team Leader is responsible for the content, methodology and quality control for the study: he holds the final responsibility on the deliverables and results of the mission. The Project Manager is responsible for the process and has a management role in the mission (main contact point for the Commission). We require the same policy knowledge for the Team Leader and for the Project Manager. Yet, for the Team Leader we additionally require specific qualifications in evaluation methods, as he/she will hold the extra responsibility to coordinate the quality of the evaluation, a responsibility which the project manager does not have and for which we therefore would not require these specific skills. Please also note that as for the Team Manager we require 5 years' experience in managing a team, we have not stated the same requirement for the project manager.


Question

With reference to the criterion B2 linked to the project manager profile (page 32 of the tender specifications) should we consider the experience in the field of Cohesion Policy and/or Transport and Enlargement policies binding or desirable?

Answer

In accordance with the Tender Specifications, tenderers must comply with all the criteria for the selection phase.
Concerning criterion B2, the tenderer must prove experience in the field of

  1. 'Cohesion Policy and major projects and/or
  2. Transport and Enlargement policies'.

It means that experience in at least one of the two fields must be considered as compulsory.


Question

At page 25 of the Tender Specifications it is stated that the contractor will cover travel and accommodation costs for the participants to the seminar (40 from public authorities and 20 not from public authorities) and that these costs will include the night stays, train/flights as well as a fee for non public authorities which are to be appropriate for the level of expertise of the participants.

Could you please clarify what kind of participants are covered by the "not from public authorities" category? This is not fully clear to us.

In addition, could you please provide an indication of the "appropriate fee" that should be guaranteed to these participants?

Answer

'Not from public authorities' means private-sector participants
and
'From public authorities' means participants representing a public authority of a Member State.

'Fees appropriate to the level of expertise': it is the tenderer's responsibility to decide on the appropriateness of the fees depending on the level of expertise of the expert.


Question

How will we receive instructions to create a Participant Identification Code? In which stage of the tender procedure we will be requested to obtain and provide our PIC number? Should we obtain it before the submission deadline?

Answer

The procedure for creation of Participant Identification Code is not applicable at Directorate-General Regional and Urban Policy at this stage. If the procedure becomes applicable, tenderers will receive instructions on how to create a PIC in due time.


Question

Could you please confirm that there is no template of the Cover Letter mentioned in the first paragraph of Section 1.7 - Identification of the tenderer (page 6 of the Tender Specifications)?

Answer

We confirm: there is no specific template to follow.


Question

According to our understanding, this is the list of documents regarding the experts to submit with our offer:

  1. Declaration of conflict of Interest - Annex 4
  2. CVs
  3. At least 5 certificates of knowledge of English language (Level C1) or certificate of other relevant experience proving this skill

Could you please confirm whether our understanding is correct? If not, please give us further details.

Answer

  1. Each expert must sign the Declaration of conflict of interest in Annex 4 of the Tender Specifications.
  2. For Criterion B3 'Comprehensive team of experts', CVs are required as evidence.
  3. Criterion B5 'Language quality check' refers to the whole team. Language certificates (or past relevant experience) are required as evidence.

It means that experience in at least one of the two fields must be considered as compulsory.


Question & Answers (in italic bold)

In order to develop a realistic plan for the resources needed for data collection, we seek clarification on the following questions:

Does the monitoring data that will be provided by the Commission cover the full period 2014 – 2017 in all areas mentioned in Task 2?
If not, could you please indicate which estimated share of information/data will have to be collected from other sources (e.g. 40% or 90%)?
Is available JASPERS monitoring data clearly related to the individuial assignments?

Yes, JASPERS activities are monitored on the basis of individual assignments.

With regard to the individual questions of Task 2:

Question 1: Is the following data available?

  • JASPERS staff member/ experts’ man days and/or budget involved per assignment  
  • The time per assignment is not available for all assignements of the period being evaluated.  For the budget, please see the reply to question 3 below.

  • Information related to non-major projects, horizontal activities and capacity building?
  • Yes, the information related to non major projects, horizontal activities and capacity building is available, with description of the assignment, team composition, timeline and final deliverables.

Question 3: Is the following data available?

  • Is all required data available to conduct both, the FAFA and the SGA budget analysis method?
  • The SGA budget is on the basis of the FAFA rates for staff and missions, and actual cost for other expenditure. Data is provided to the Commission for the justification of annual budgets and payments, plus annual audited financial statements.

  • Can available cost figures be linked to individual assignments or actions?
  • The budgets are linked to staff numbers which in turn are linked to the number of assignments and distribution by sector.

Question 5: Is the following data available?

  • Activities conducted per JASPERS staff member/ expert in terms of time and performance
  • About the activities conducted per JASPERS expert, the following information is available: number of assignments completed by expert, number of on-going assignments by expert, time per assignment from 2017.

  • Time provided for different types of activity or assignment (major/ non-major projects, capacity building, horizontal activities) from start to completion?
  • Regarding time for different of activities or assignments, the following information is available: inception date and completion date for all asignments, plus man-hours per assignment and type of activity from 2017.

Information and Forms for Experts

No 2017CE16BAT088 - Study on the use of technical assistance for administrative capacity building during the 2014-2020 period

Official Journal of the European Union: 2017/S 053-097330 ( 25/01/2018 )

Contract Notice PDF File en

Invitation PDF File en

Specifications PDF File en

Draft contract PDF File en

Declaration of honour DOC File en

Question :

In relation to the call for tenders Study on the use of technical assistance for administrative capacity building during the 2014-2020 period, I would need to receive some clarifications:

Regarding the Selection criteria (A1 – A2 – A4) on pag.18 , what are the last three years? 2014/2015/2016 or 2015/2016/2017?

Moreover, can the project still be ongoing?

Answer:

The last three years means 2015 / 2016 / 2017.

Ongoing projects can be taken into account.


Question :

The tender specifications of call N°2017CE16BAT088 mention on page 18 under heading 1.1.1. Technical and professional capacity criteria and evidence
A. Criteria relating to tenderers
that
‘Tenderers (in case of a joint tender the combined capacity of all members of the group and identified subcontractors) must comply with the criteria listed below. The evidence must be provided only on request. The project references indicated below consist in a list of relevant services provided in the past three years, with the sums, dates and clients, public or private, accompanied by statements issued by the clients.’

The above suggests that the evidence for the technical and professional capacity criteria including the statements by clients and CVs do not need to be submitted as part of the proposal but must be provided only on request. Is the interpretation correct? If our interpretation were not correct please specify which evidence should be submitted as part of the proposal and in particular if statements by clients should be included.

Answer:

Your interpretation is correct. The evidence will be requested at a later stage.


Question :

In relation to the call for tenders Study on the use of technical assistance for administrative capacity building during the 2014-2020 period
Could you please confirm that it is not required to submit any CVs during this phase?

Answer:

This is correct. The evidence will be requested at a later stage.


Question :

Following the call for tenders N° 2017CE16BAT088 on the Study on the use of technical assistance for administrative capacity building during the 2014-2020 period, as well as previous answers published on the EC website, I would like to receive the following clarification:

The reference study mentioned at page 6 of the tender specifications: “Co-financing Salaries, Bonuses, Top-ups from Structural Funds during the 2007-2013 period” refers to Country factsheets. These fact sheets are not available on the Commission web page indicated in the ToR, where the report can be downloaded. These factsheets maybe useful for the bid. Are they available on another web page? If yes where?

Answer:

The Commission decided not to publish the Country factsheets because they were not verified by Member States.


Question :

In relation to the call for tenders Study on the use of technical assistance for administrative capacity building during the 2014-2020 period, I would need to receive the following clarification:

Since no references (descriptions of projects) proving fulfillment of the criteria relating to tenderers (as mentioned in 4.2.4.A of the tender specifications) and no CVs proving fulfillment of the criteria relating to the team delivering the service (as mentioned in 4.2.4.B of the tender specifications) are required to be a part of the proposal submitted by 07/03/2018 – what kind of document should be included in the proposal to meet these selection criteria? Is just a short statement enough for this purpose?

Answer:

As stated on point 4.2.1, the tenderers (and each member of the group in case of joint tender) and subcontractors whose capacity is necessary to fulfil the selection criteria must provide the declaration on honour, signed and dated by an authorised representative, stating that they fulfil the selection criteria applicable to them individually. The template of this declaration on honour is published on INFOREGIO.

The evidence will be requested at a later stage.


Question :

According to sec. II.9.5 and II.24 of the draft contract the contracting authority and the European Anti-Fraud Office shall be entitled to conduct checks and audits. This shall include the right to access to sites and premises of the contractor. As a professional audit firm, the contractor is bound to legal and contractual confidentiality obligations. Is it therefore true, that checks and audits within the contractor sites and premises according to Art. 24 of the FWC shall be conducted only to the extent necessary and that this shall never force the contractor to be in breach with its legal and contractual confidentiality obligations towards its clients?

Answer:

Article II.9.5. doesn't refer to auditors but the contractor's personnel and to the access to data of the contractor’s personnel.

Regarding Article 24, yes, if an audit is conducted in the framework of the contract 2017CE16BAT088, checks and audits within the contractor sites and premises will be conducted only to the extent necessary and on the performance of the contract. The contractor will not be forced to be in breach with its legal and contractual confidentiality obligations towards its clients.


Information and Forms for Experts

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