NPM No. 038-2015

Requesting Entity: We Are It Philippines, Inc.

Issues Concern: Marking and Sealing; Responsiveness of Bids



1. Whether placing the technical documents together with the financial documents is a ground for disqualification

Section 25 of the IRR of RA 9184 and Clauses 20.1 and 20.2 of the Instruction to Bidders (ITB) of the Philippine Bidding Documents (PBD) for Goods provide for the procedure to be adopted in the submission, sealing and marking of bids. This is the same procedure to be adopted by the BAC and is to be used unchanged by procuring entities in the preparation of the Bidding Documents.

[T]he rules relative to sealing simply provide that the envelopes containing the technical and financial components should be sealed to maintain the integrity of the submitted documents. Ensuring the proper sealing and marking of the bid envelopes is imperative upon the BAC and the bidders. The rules on sealing of bids must be strictly observed considering that RA 9184 and its IRR treat as criminal act the opening of any sealed bid and any and all documents required to be sealed, or divulging their contents, prior to the appointed time for the public opening of Bids.

2. Whether leaving several blank items required for the bid is a ground for disqualification

Section 32.2.1 of the IRR of RA 9184 provides that unless the Instructions to Bidders allow partial bids, bids that do not address or provide all the required items or where no price was indicated in the Bidding Documents, including bill of quantities, shall be considered non-responsive, and thus, automatically disqualified. However, specifying a "0" (zero) for an item would mean that it is being offered for free to the government.

[I]n order for the procuring entity to consider a bid as complete and responsive, the bidder should apply all pertinent information, in the form of an actual amount, zero, or dash, for each of the required items in the bidding documents.