The National Agency for Public Procurement shall promote legal, effective and sustainable public procurement to the benefit of all citizens and the development of trade and industry. We shall also provide guidance to municipalities and regions concerning the EU rules on state aid.
One important aspect of our support is to develop public procurement in order for it to contribute to better sustainable development. As part of our task, we play an important role in achieving Sweden’s national environmental quality and sustainable development goals in the 2030 Agenda.
We also promote innovation procurement and encourage more suppliers, including small and medium-sized businesses as well as idea-driven organisations, to participate in procurements. We also want to contribute to strengthening the strategic importance of procurements to the public sector.
We provide support to procuring organisations and suppliers through guidance and development of expertise, methods and tools for all stages of the procurement process.
Our instruction states specifically that we should:
- Contribute to procurements being managed strategically, by developing the methods or through other means.
- Contribute to procurements being planned, conducted, followed up and assessed effectively.
- Promote better environmental and social considerations, as well as developing and managing criteria for environmental considerations, including energy requirements and social considerations in procurements. We also aim to develop and manage a national database of criteria for green procurement.
- Improve know-how within innovation procurement.
- Promote an all-out electronic purchasing process and participate in its standardisation.
- Make it easier for small and medium-sized businesses as well as idea-driven organisations to participate in procurements.
- Promote relevant research within the field of procurement as well as promoting international development.
We are a statistics agency with a remit to develop, manage and disseminate statistics on procurement. From January 1, 2021, we are responsible for managing a statistics database where information from all procurement advertisements is collected. Being a statistics agency also means that we announce regulations for the advertising databases.
Systems of choice
Part of our task is to develop and manage a national database for advertising systems of choice, i.e. a system where the end user can choose their own supplier. With Valfrihetswebben, we provide easily accessible, searchable information, at no cost, about services advertised within a system of choice. We also provide support on matters concerning the processing of applications, requirements and contract follow-up within systems of choice.
Guidance on state aid issues
The National Agency for Public Procurement has been tasked by the Swedish government with providing guidance to municipalities and regions in matters of state aid, and contributing to improving their ability to assess when and how to apply state aid rules.
State aid is being granted when one or more companies receives public funding and gain an advantage in relation to its competitors. The rules will apply when a public sector stakeholder, such as a municipality or region, under certain circumstances uses public funds to aid an organization. The aim of the rules on state aid is that public sector stakeholders do not distort the competition in the internal market of the European Union.
The guidance is intended to contribute to increased awareness of the rules, and to provide municipalities and regions with better knowledge for determining when the state aid rules should be applied, as well as what possibilities the rules present.
The government gives us new government assignments in their yearly appropriation directions and also continuously throughout the year. We also receive assignments within the scope of the mission of other agencies.
According to our mandate, we shall collaborate with other stakeholders, both government agencies and other organisations, nationally and within the European Union. The government particularly emphasizes collaboration with:
- The Swedish Competition Authority
- The Legal, Financial and Administrative Services Agency
- The National Board of Trade Sweden
- The Swedish Environmental Protection Agency
- Swedish Public Employment Service
- The Swedish Work Environment Authority
We also collaborate with, among others, the Swedish Agency for Digital Administration (DIGG), the Swedish Association of Local Authorities and Regions (SALAR), the Swedish Chemicals Agency, the Swedish Energy Agency and the Swedish National Board of Housing, Building and Planning.
Collaboration with industry, civil society, the public sector, academia and citizens is essential for our ability to tackle major societal challenges. At the same time, it provides us with information about the needs that exist for developing procurement in the public sector. Good collaboration is a prerequisite for our ability to co-create, explore and involve stakeholders across different sectors and drive positive developments together.