Matapos masimulan ang pag-aanunsyo sa napipintong na procurement, tiyak na dadagsa ang mga interesadong bidder. Bawat isa sa mga ito ay tiyak na may mga tanong lalo pa kung malaki ang halaga ng proyekto. Minsan, kailangang may malinawan sa mga terms and conditions o maging sa specifications ng produkto o serbisyo. Dito pumapasok ang pangangailangan ng isang paghaharap ng BAC at ng mga bidders – ang pre-bid conference.
Binanggit sa Section 22 ng Revised IRR ang criteria kung kailan dapat magsagawa ng pre-bid conference:
22.1. For contracts to be bid with an approved budget of One Million Pesos (P1,000,000.00) or more, the BAC shall convene at least one (1) pre-bid conference to clarify and/or explain any of the requirements, terms, conditions, and specifications stipulated in the Bidding Documents. For contracts to be bid with an approved budget of less than One Million Pesos (P1,000,000), pre-bid conferences may be conducted at the discretion of the BAC. Subject to the approval of the BAC, a pre-bid conference may also be conducted upon written request of any prospective bidder.
22.2. The pre-bid conference shall be held at least twelve (12) calendar days before the deadline for the submission and receipt of bids. If the procuring entity determines that, by reason of the method, nature, or complexity of the contract to be bid or when international participation will be more advantageous to the GOP, a longer period for the preparation of bids is necessary, the pre-bid conference shall be held at least thirty (30) calendar days before the deadline for the submission and receipt of bids.
Sino-sino ba ang kailangang dumalo ng pre-bid conference? Bukod sa BAC at mga interesadong bidder nararapat din na makilahok ang end-user – o iyong mula sa nag-request o ahensyang tagapagpatupad –kung hindi man sila represented ng BAC.Marapat din na imbitahang makilahok ang isang auditor mula sa Commission on Audit, at observer mula sa technical at sa non-governmental organizations .Depende sa diskresyon ng BAC, maaaring yun lamang na bumili o nagbayad ng bidding documents fee ang payagang makadalo ng pre-bidding conference.
22.3. The pre-bid conference shall discuss, among other things, the eligibility requirements and the technical and financial components of the contract to be bid. Attendance of the bidders shall not be mandatory. However, at the discretion of the Procuring Entity, only those who have purchased the Bidding Documents shall be allowed to participate in the pre-bid conference and raise or submit written queries or clarifications.
Q: Can we change/modify the bidding documents after it has been posted?
A: Yes. Section 22.4 of the Revised IRR states that:
“22.4. The minutes of the pre-bid conference shall be recorded and made available to all participants not later than three (3) calendar days after the pre bid conference. Any statement made at the pre-bid conference shall not modify the terms of the Biddinag Documents, unless such statement is specifically identified in writing as an amendment thereto and issued as a Supplemental/Bid Bulletin.”