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Social Partnership and Public Procurement (Wales) Act 2023

Section 24 - Socially responsible procurement duty

61.This section sets out an overarching duty on contracting authorities, requiring them to seek to improve the economic, social, environmental and cultural well-being of their areas by carrying out public procurement in a socially responsible way.

62.Subsection (2) provides that this means that they must take action, in accordance with the sustainable development principle, aimed at achieving the well-being goals in the 2015 Act.

63.Subsection (3) requires contracting authorities to set and publish objectives (“socially responsible procurement objectives”) in relation to their public procurement designed to maximise the authorities’ contributions towards the well-being goals.

64.This section also introduces a category of public procurement in respect of “prescribed contracts”. These fall into three categories, as follows. The first category is major construction contracts. These are defined in section 25. The second category is outsourcing services contracts. These are defined in section 26. The third category is any other public contract described in regulations by the Welsh Ministers. When carrying out public procurement in respect of prescribed contracts subsection (5) provides that contracting authorities must take all reasonable steps to meet their socially responsible procurement objectives.

65.Two constraints are placed by subsection (6) upon this duty to “take all reasonable steps” to meet objectives. The first is that any provisions included in a contract in relation to these objectives must be proportionate with respect to the contract value. The second is that the provisions must not conflict with any other relevant procurement-related legislation.

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Text created by the Welsh Government department responsible for the subject matter of the Act to explain what the Act sets out to achieve and to make the Act accessible to readers who are not legally qualified. Explanatory Notes accompany all Acts of Senedd Cymru.


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