a completely electronicprocess for making commonly used purchases, the characteristics of which, as generally available on the market, meet the requirements of the contracting authority, which is limited in duration and open throughout its validity to any economic operator which satisfies the selection criteria and has submitted an indicative tender that complies with the specification.
Recitals 12 and 13 of the Procurement Directive offer the following explanation of a dynamic purchasing system:
(12) Certain new electronic purchasing techniques are continually being developed. Such techniques help to increase competition and streamline public purchasing, particularly in terms of the savings in time and money which their use will allow. Contracting authorities may make use of electronic purchasing techniques, providing such use complies with the rules drawn up under this Directive and the principles of equal treatment, non-discrimination and transparency. To that extent, a tender submitted by a tenderer, in particular where competition has been reopened under a framework agreement or where a dynamic purchasing system is being used, may take the form of that tenderer's electronic catalogue if the latter uses the means of communication chosen by the contracting authority in accordance with Article 42.
(13) In view of the rapid expansion of electronic purchasing systems, appropriate rules should now be introduced to enable contracting authorities to take full advantage of the possibilities afforded by these systems. Against this background, it is necessary to define a completely electronic dynamic purchasing system for commonly used purchases, and lay down specific rules for setting up and operating such a system in order to ensure the fair treatment of any economic operator who wishes to take part therein. Any economic operator which submits an indicative tender in accordance with the specification and meets the selection criteria should be allowed to join such a system. This purchasing technique allows the contracting authority, through the establishment of a list of tenderers already selected and the opportunity given to new tenderers to take part, to have a particularly broad range of tenders as a result of the electronic facilities available, and hence to ensure optimum use of public funds through broad competition.