Procurement in the German Armed Forces (Bundeswehr)

Be it combat vehicles, computers or clothing : The Bundeswehr needs adequate equipment to be able to fulfil its mission. According to Article 87b of the German Basic Law, satisfying these procurement needs is the direct responsibility of the Federal Defence Administration.

Foundations of Procurement

In order to provide the Bundeswehr with efficient and safe equipment, civilian agencies of the Federal Defence Administration award contracts to companies from the industry, trade and commerce sectors. In the decision-making process, all stakeholders must comply with numerous provisions related to public procurement law.

In addition, the Bundeswehr-specific Customer Product Management (CPMCustomer Product Management) procedural regulation is relevant for the determination and satisfaction of requirements.

On this basis, the Federal Office of Bundeswehr Equipment, Information Technology and In-Service Support (BAAINBw) is one of the central procurement agencies of the Bundeswehr. This term refers to a government procuring agency providing other government procuring agencies with supplies and services on a sustained basis.

For example, BAAINBw awards study, research and development contracts as well as contracts for the initial supply and follow-on supply of defence and supply items (motor vehicles, Air Force and Navy equipment, communication equipment, information technology, weapons, ammunition, missiles, POL products, food, etc.), including repair activities, on behalf of the single services.

Depending on the nature of the contract item (civilian or defence- and security-related contract item) and the estimated contract value (without turnover tax, but including all options), the contract award procedure is governed by the provisions of the Regulation on the Award of Below-Threshold Contracts (Unterschwellenvergabeordnung, UVgO), the Regulation on the Award of Public Contracts (Vergabeverordnung, VgV) or the Procurement Regulation on Defence and Security (Vergabeverordnung Verteidigung und Sicherheit, VSVgV). Whether a contract falls under the scope of these standards depends, among other things, on a so-called threshold. Further information on this topic may be obtained from the websites of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy.

Laws and Regulations

Find useful links to laws and regulations governing procurement in the Bundeswehr:

  1. German Federal Budget Code (Bundeshaushaltsordnung, BHO)
    View the German Federal Budget Code (via the German Federal Ministry of Justice and Consumer Protection)
  2. Act against Restraints of Competition (Gesetz gegen Wettbewerbsbeschränkungen, GWB), Part 4 to Part 6: Award of Public Contracts (only for award procedures initiated before 18. April 2016)
    View the Act against Restraints of Competition (via the German Federal Ministry of Justice and Consumer Protection) 
  3. Regulation on the Award of Public Contracts (Verordnung über die Vergabe öffentlicher Aufträge, VgV), (only for award procedures initiated before 18. April 2016)
    View the Regulation (via the German Federal Ministry of Justice and Consumer Protection)
  4. Procurement Regulation on Defence and Security (Vergabeverordnung für die Bereiche Verteidigung und Sicherheit, VSVgV), (only for award procedures initiated before 18. April 2016) 
    View the Regulation (via the German Federal Ministry of Justice and Consumer Protection)
  5. Regulation on the Award of Below-Threshold Contracts (Unterschwellenvergabeordnung, UVgO)
    View the Regulation (via the German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy)
  6. Conditions Concerning Contracts for Public Works (Vergabe- und Vertragsordnung für Bauleistungen, VOB) – Part A – Section 1
    View the Conditions Concerning Contracts (via the German Federal Ministry of the Interior, Building and Community)

Provisions on Pricing and Reviews of Prices

The Regulation PR No. 30/53 on Pricing in Public Contracts (Verordnung PR Nr. 30/53 über die Preise bei öffentlichen Aufträgen) contains provisions on pricing and reviews of prices in public contracts (pricing law and the principle of the auditing of prices). The “Rules for the Determination of Cost Prices” (Leitsätze für die Preisermittlung auf Grund von Selbstkosten) are annexed to this Regulation. Both documents may be downloaded here:

Regulation PR No. 30/53 on Pricing in Public Contracts (Verordnung PR Nr. 30/53 über die Preise bei öffentlichen Aufträgen) via the German Federal Ministry of Justice and Consumer Protection

Rules for the Determination of Cost Prices (Leitsätze für die Preisermittlung auf Grund von Selbstkosten) via the German Federal Ministry of Justice and Consumer Protection

Other Topics