A contracting authority "may not reject a tender for works, products or services which comply with a national standard transposing a European standard."
Directive 2004/18/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council
31 March, 2004

Are the EN Eurocodes Mandatory?

Under the Public Procurement Directive Public Procurement Directive, 528kB, it is mandatory that Member States accept designs to the EN Eurocodes. The EN Eurocodes will become the standard technical specification for all public works contracts. If proposing an alternative design one must demonstrate that is technically equivalent to an EN Eurocode solution.

A contracting authority shall formulate technical specifications in one of the following ways:

  1. by reference to technical specifications and to national standards transposing (in order of preference) ENs, ETAs, common technical specifications, international standards, technical reference systems established by ESOs or, when these do not exist, to national standards, technical approvals or technical specifications, or equivalent;
  2. in terms of performance or functional requirements;
  3. in terms of performance or functional requirements with reference to the specifications in (1) as a means of presuming conformity with such requirements;
  4. in terms of technical specifications for certain characteristics and in terms of performance of functional requirements for other characteristics.

As the National Standardisation Bodies are not expected to maintain the withdrawn National standards in practice, there will be little option but to use the EN Eurocodes. It is extremely likely that pressures from international clients and contractors, as well as other stakeholders like the insurance industry, will lead to their more rapid application for private construction.