From 10-14 November 2019, a six-person delegation from the Legal Department of Ministry of Finance of the PRC visited Berlin. The topic of the study trip was Procurement and Provision of Public Services and Implementation of the Public-Private Partnership (PPP). The delegation was headed by Mr GU Tianshu; representatives of the Sino-German Cooperation Programme of the GIZ, which had organized the strip, accompanied them.
In the Federal Ministry of the Interior, Building and Community, the Undersecretary Dr Redder, Sub-Departmental Head of the Sub-Department SW II (Housing) welcomed the delegation. Dr Redder led an expert discussion with the Sub-Unit head SW III Ms Sabine Bohndick on the structure of the housing market – in particular, of the rental market – and the measures to support social housing construction. The participants in the discussion focussed in particular on the financial support mechanisms – such as subsidies and interest rebates that are available alongside public social housing construction.
In the Federal Ministry of Economics and Technology, Mr Dr. Christian Stursberg, Dr. Thomas Solbach and Mr. Simon Schwerdtfeger gave an introduction to German procurement law and procedures. He also addressed the question of market access and discussed the significance of the Government Procurement Agreement (GPA) of the WTO, touching on the revised market access offer presented to the WTO in this regard in October 2019.
In the Federal Ministry of Finance, the delegation was greeted by the State Secretary Werner Gatzer, gave them an outline of new tendencies in the area of public-private partnerships. After this, the senior civil servant Nicolaus-Alejandro Weil von Aheeinen gave the delegation a comprehensive overview of basic public services in Germany, and on the structure, responsibilities, and procedures of PPP in Germany.
The representatives of the Federal Ministry of Transport and Digital Infrastructure, Mr Völker Mattern and Mr. Frank Süsser gave presentations on the responsibilities of the Ministry, as well as on roadbuilding in Germany and the use of public-private partnerships in this area.
Dr Uwe Schmidt of the management of and Mr. Simon Singer gave a presentation on the responsibilities of the Partnerschaft Deutschland as an in-house company of the federal state and its consulting services in the context of public-private partnership projects. The latter topic was of particular interest, as there is no comparable institution in China. The discussion took place in the building of the Federal Ministry for Education and Research (BMBF). Ms Simone Kuzak, representative of the Institute for Federal Real Estate (BImA), gave the delegation members a tour of the BMBF and gave them an introduction to the “Futurium” building as an example of a public-private partnership.
In the concluding discussion, Prof. Dr. Reidt, Partner of the law firm REDEKER SELLNER DAHS and Professor of the Humboldt University Berlin, gave a presentation on the emergence of German and European procurement law, on the structure of tendering procedures, intellectual property rights, and possibilities for appeals, as well as on the institutions involved. Prof. Reidt illustrated his talk with examples from his own experience as a practicing lawyer.
At the end of the programme, the delegation agreed that a further deepening of the exchange would be desirable, particularly on questions of public private partnerships and the working methods of Partnerschaft Deutschland.