NEC ECC: What to include/amend in tenders from now on? (COVID-19)

NEC3 ECC option A - Currently have construction contract out for pricing and have nothing specific in relation to COVID-19. Clause 19.1 and 60.1.19 have been removed from the contract as my solicitors don’t like them!

I have a tenderer seeking clarification on how the Client wants COVID-19 to be addressed in the tender submission!

I would have thought that this rests with each tenderer on how they evaluate the risk, review supply chain, sub-contractors, pricing strategy, etc. based on the anticipated starting dated given in CD-1 of late Summer/Autumn 2020.

COVID-19 is now a known event and they have to price accordingly?

You are correct.

Even if your solicitor hadn’t removed clauses 19.1 and 60.1(19) it is likely / probable that Contractors entering into contracts after the Coronavirus outbreak would find it hard to trigger these clauses as they’d struggle to argue that the outbreak and it’s consequences had 'such a small chance of occurring that it would have been unreasonable to have allowed for it".

Personally I’m not sure I’d tender for a project on this basis, you’re asking your supply chain to price a risk that is extremely difficult to quantify at the moment. That’s a different argument though, for now you should clarify with your tenderers that they should price the risk accordingly and see what effect this has on your tender returns (e.g. increased prices / loss of interest).

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