Compliance with the principles in the Handbook is regarded by Ministers and the Public Procurement Reform Board as mandatory. The Review of Public Procurement in Scotland stated (section 7.1) that:
"The Policy contents of the handbook should be mandatory for implementation across all public sector organisations and compliance measured and reported upon during audits and other reviews."
The Handbook applies, therefore, to all Scottish contracting authorities (bodies governed by public law) included in regulation 3 of The Public Contracts (Scotland) Regulations 2006. Compliance with the requirements of the Handbook is expected to feature prominently in internal and external audit scrutiny.
Any contracting authority which fails to comply with the principles and requirements of this Handbook and to apply best practice procurement processes and procedures is unlikely to be able to demonstrate value for money, or be able to demonstrate adequate governance and accountability for the appropriate management of public funds and expenditure.
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