I propose to take Questions Nos. 304 and 305 together.
On 23 December 2013 my Department commenced a tender process in accordance with EU procurement requirements for the "Provision of Expert Advice on Oil and Gas Exploration, Development and Production Fiscal Terms". There was a good response to the tender and in February 2014 Wood Mackenzie was chosen as the successful tender.
The contract was awarded on the basis of the most economically advantageous tender. The following award criteria were applied:
- Demonstrated understanding of the nature and requirements of the assignment as set out in the Request for Tender (RFT);
- Comprehensiveness and quality of the proposal to fulfil the assignment as set out in the RFT;
- The qualifications and expertise of the team assigned;
- Project management plan showing tasks that will be carried out and by whom and the timescale for completing such tasks within the required time.
Wood Mackenzie who have considerable experience in providing fiscal advice to a broad range of clients, including governments, have now commenced their work and I look forward to receiving their expert advice in due course.