A Quick and Easy Way of Contracting

Photo by: © European Union, 1995-2012

When the European Commission needs to hire experts immediately for projects in partner countries, it turns to one contracting instrument to do so: the Framework Contract Beneficiaries.

“It is easy to use and it is quick,” Agnes Champion, who leads the European Commission’s Supervision Contrats-cadre in Brussels, said of framework contracts.

Champion’s section is responsible for various stages of the procedure, including launching the tender process, signing of contracts, and maintaining the whole framework infrastructure. It deals with any legal modification and functions as a help desk in interpreting the contractual provisions. Its responsibility ends right before contracting at the level of a specific assignment.

Champion revealed that the European Commission awards about 1,200 contracts worth 132 million euros yearly. The framework contract period normally lasts four to five years. Each contract has an implementation duration that cannot exceed two years and would entail experts to work less than 260 days.

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About the author

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    Mikael Fridell

    Mikael Fridell earned a master's degree in economics at the University of Uppsala and a bachelor's degree in economics at the University of Lund. His work and internship experiences encompass the public and private sectors and include a stint at an educational institute in Jerusalem, internship at the Swedish embassy in Manila, field study on the informal sector and microcredit in the West Bank, and positions at the Ministry for Foreign Affairs and the SEB Financing Corp. in Stockholm. He won a Devex fellowship in February 2008, and worked out of our Barcelona office. Mikael is fluent in English and Swedish is his mother tongue.