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Friday 21 April 2017

General election purdah starts tonight

Cabinet Office logoThe Cabinet Office has published its general election guidance for civil servants. The guidance, which also applies to the board members and staff of Non-Departmental Public Bodies and other arms’ length bodies, takes effect from midnight tonight, at which point the ‘election period’ (purdah) begins.

This means the Government has had a surprisingly short amount of time for ‘wash-up’, the period after a general election has been called, but before the election period begins, to conclude any urgent business that has cross party support.

For SITS suppliers, moving into the election period is likely to mean delays in larger contract negotiations and the issuing of new tenders. The guidance states:

“Decisions on matters of policy, and other issues such as large and/or contentious commercial contracts, on which a new government might be expected to want the opportunity to take a different view from the present government, should be postponed until after the election, provided that such postponement would not be detrimental to the national interest or wasteful of public money.”

As discussed in today’s Brexit: The Implications report, the election period is unlikely to delay Brexit planning. The guidance is clear that, “EU and international business will continue as normal during the period of the general election, including business relating to exiting the European Union.” The bigger impact will be on the large number of bills that will have to be restarted in the next Parliament, when Brexit work really starts to ramp up. 

Posted by Dale Peters at '09:34' - Tagged: contracts   election   brexit   civil   service   purdah  

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