National procurement rules must be observed for all purchases and full documentation of the procurement is mandatory for expenditure to be regarded as eligible. All partners need to fulfil national regulations regarding public procurement. Even below national and EU thresholds, contracts with external providers shall comply with the principles of transparency, non-discrimination, equal treatment and effective competition. The procurement shall be made according to policies in the partner organisation. A procurement is made to make the project more cost efficient and is also a way to consider the sustainable development perspective when choosing what to buy.
If a joint procurement is made, the tendered organisation should send invoices to the different partners directly. The project cannot share the cost of the common procurement if only the Lead partner gets the invoice from the tendered organisation as invoicing between partners shall be avoided. If the project intends to share the cost, they need to get the invoices directly from the tendered organisation.
Regarding tenders made by one partner on behalf of other partners, it may be possible to share the cost through the setup of the actual tender. If it is formally agreed between the project partners (a written agreement and/or power of attorney might be needed), one partner could include other partner organisations in the terms of reference for the tender. The tendered organisation could then invoice different project partners for their proportion of the contract. Please note, that it is the responsibility of the individual project partner to ensure that such a procedure is eligible according to national procurement rules, and that documentation requirements according to law and organisational guidelines are fulfilled.